How Teledentistry Can Improve Access To Dental Care

Each year rural areas continually shrink, and there’s a constant need for high-income jobs to maintain a living. Dentists leaving college find themselves in debt, making rural locations unlikely to be chosen. Due to this, it’s common to see people in rural areas with poor dental health due to the lack of access to orthodontic care. Despite this, a new form of dentistry is being introduced, known as teledentistry.

When addressing a dental issue, from a cleft palate to a simple dental misalignment, you need a dentist who can provide this form of care. However, many rural locations can restrict access to this form of care in areas with fewer people and less income. teledentistry is a form of care striving to fill the gap, making it possible to provide the care that patients need without having them make a lengthy trip.

How Dental Patients Benefit From Teledentistry

Teledentistry can address the expanding gap between low-income rural areas and dental care. This is done by using telecommunication to reform the relationship between clinics and their patient family. 

It benefits the patient, including shorter travel, lesser care costs, and communication flexibility. Telehealth isn’t a new concept; it’s existed as long as the telephone. The surge of COVID-19 has sent teledentistry out of obscurity and into everyday conversations. Access to dental care and delivery has been growing, while dental costs in underserved areas have decreased.

At a glance, it’s understandable if teledentistry appears to have limited use. Dental technologies have significantly improved the effectiveness of this form of care. However, there are multiple areas in which teledentistry can provide care options for patients and dentists alike:

  • Diagnostic Assistance: Dentists can use photographs and video calling to perform follow-ups and basic triage over digital devices. In many areas, it’s possible to go to a local third-party facility for imaging, the results of which will be transmitted to your dentist. 
  • Dental Treatment: Numerous new forms of dental care can be achieved remotely, mainly clear aligners. Dentists may send a mail-in dental impression kit to their patients. After following the included directions, they can mail the kit back to their dentist. The dentist will then evaluate the kit and send it to a lab to make the aligners without a visit to the dental office.
  • Instant Temporary Care: Those experiencing a dental emergency can receive an immediate diagnosis and care over the phone or via video chat. First, dentists can provide response medication, and patients can be instructed in at-home care techniques until they visit the dentist. In many cases, dentists can do the full spectrum of necessary care remotely.

Speak With Your Dentist For More Information

Each year more clinics are adopting additional teledental treatment options for their patients. You can reach out to your provider to acquire information about their services. While you’re at it, schedule your next bi-annual visit so you can take steps to get the proper care. You may discover that the inconveniences you’ve faced before are long in the past with the help of teledentistry.

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