what is teledentistry

Teledentistry: Providing Dental Health During Coronavirus Quarantine

Maybe you’ve heard of telehealth. It’s a buzz word that describes a new way to deliver healthcare. There is a growing shift towards virtual care, and with the current COVID-19 pandemic requiring people to self-isolate, this method of healthcare delivery has become even more important.

Telehealth embraces various systems, tools, and modes of healthcare delivery from a distance. This may include live video chats, transmissions of digital impressions, or radiographs via electronic communication, remote patient monitoring, and mobile healthcare availability. Telehealth embraces various components, and one of these components is teledentistry.

What is Teledentistry? 

Teledentistry is a technology-driven method of delivering dentistry services. People who do not have quick access to dental care can be helped through teledentistry. This method of care uses technology to improve dental access and provide immediate support, diagnosis, and treatment.

A teledental visit may take place between the dentist and his clients via online communication. The consultation may be about a dental or oral health problem. With this method, urgent oral issues may be remedied immediately. This will also help people avoid time-consuming in-office visits.

Teledentistry and COVID-19

As part of its efforts to help minimize or eliminate the spread of COVID-19, the American Dental Association provided guidelines on the use of teledentistry. In the face of the current global health crisis, telehealth including teledentistry has become an effective and viable option to provide dental healthcare.

In its March 18 letter, ADA asked all dental practices nationwide to postpone treating non-emergency dental problems and only provide treatment for urgent dental cases. As a result, many dental practices have explored the possibility of providing treatment via teledentistry.

The method will include:

  • Live video calls or conferences between the dentist and the patient.
  • Transmission of dental health information like digital impressions and x-rays via electronic communication systems.
  • Remote patient monitoring.
  • Providing support through mobile communications.

What Constitutes a Dental Emergency?

Unless you are suffering from a dental emergency, it is best to call your dentist or resort to teledentistry for consultation. We, at Dastrup Dental in Davidson, offer teledentistry for elective cases, but we are open for emergency dental services. But what constitutes a dental emergency?

Dental emergencies may include:

  • Uncontrolled dental bleeding
  • Oral swelling and facial trauma that compromises airway passages
  • Severe dental pain from gum inflammation
  • Pericoronitis
  • Dry sockets requiring dressing changes
  • Post-operative osteitis
  • A dental fracture resulting in severe pain
  • Oral trauma with avulsion or luxation
  • Abnormal tissue biopsy

The ADA has provided guidelines on teledentistry. They have clarified that the appropriate services for telehealth include Facebook Messenger Video Chat, Google Hangouts video, Apple FacTime, and Skype. The guidelines focus on ensuring that private health information is protected.

Treatment of patients receiving teledentistry care must be documented properly. The dentist providing teledentistry services must be licensed in his state. We, at Dastrup Dental, guarantee that we are in full compliance with the guidelines set by ADA.

Through our teledentistry services, we will provide our clinical expertise to patients in need of dental care. If you require our teledentistry services, do not hesitate to contact us today for immediate virtual dental care. Our online scheduling is available 24/7.

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