The pandemic has resulted in an immense change in the lives of millions of people worldwide. While the impact of COVID has been nothing less than tragic, it has led to innovation in the world of medicine. Doctors ‘ appointments became questionable in a world where we were told to socially distance and wear masks to avoid passing infection. As the pandemic went on, many medical professionals had to find new solutions. Telemedicine was one of the first solutions many clinics reached for in all its forms. As a result, teledentistry became increasingly available, and multiple options were explored and implemented.
How Teledentistry Has Improved Orthodontic Care
Many individuals were surprised to see how quickly teledentistry was incorporated into dental clinics all over the United States. It started with additional utilization of video calling, with check-ups being done remotely whenever possible. Teleorthodontic care also started to be used more prominently. Teleorthodontics used to be reserved for cases where the patient was unable to make it into the office or it was difficult to do so. It starts with the dentist sending out a dental impression kit the patient can use at home and send back to the office. Once this impression kit is received, it can be used to create the clear aligner that will be used to make the adjustment. You will only need visits to the office if complications occur during the procedure and, in some cases, as part of the initial intake.
For instance, when an x-ray is required to identify issues with dental pain or to rule out oral health concerns that can interfere with treatment, a visit to the office must occur. This can occur before or after the dental impression kit is sent and received. Sometimes this initial kit will reveal potential concerns, necessitating an office visit. If all goes well, this won’t be necessary. Another reason you may require a visit to the dental office would be if your treatment requires traditional braces or additional orthodontic care. Even with these cases, You will handle your follow-ups almost entirely through teledentistry.
Teledentistry provides the following important benefits to the patient and dentist:
- Limiting the need for visits to the physical office
- Convenient dental appointment times
- Reduced risk of passing infections
- Less time needed for dental visits
- No commute time is necessary
These benefits contribute significantly to the fact that teledentistry has seen increasing adoption among dental clinics worldwide. Insurance providers have been adapting to the shift by providing additional coverage for these types of visits. This same movement has been driving change in the United States in the form of legislation supporting the adoption of telemedicine practices.
Work With Your Dentist About Teledentistry Options
Every dental clinic has its own assortment of services and options they offer. Speak to your clinic to determine if they have teledentistry options that will work for you. If they do, your next stop is calling your dental insurance to ensure that you’ll be covered if you take advantage of them. Teledentistry and teleorthodontics are making getting dental care safer, easier, and faster than ever before.