AI plays an increasingly integral role in the provision of health and dental care. As technology advances, dental offices, dentists and patients can benefit from incredible innovations. In this article, we’ll outline the key benefits of AI in dentistry.
Dental care is undergoing an exciting digital revolution. The use of AI within the dental industry is providing dental professionals with scope to offer new services, improve treatment outcomes, boost efficiency and enhance training and skills development. The application of AI is far-ranging. Here are some examples of how Artificial Intelligence is improving dental health:
Dental AI offers opportunities to recognize symptoms of oral disorders and facilitate early diagnosis to improve treatment outcomes. Algorithms can identify signs of healthy and unhealthy teeth and gums, detecting early warning signs that may not be visible from all angles. This means that AI could identify symptoms or abnormalities that dentists cannot pick up to speed up the diagnostic and treatment processes and reduce the risk of missing early signs of dental disease. AI tools can be used to spot a range of symptoms, including tooth wear and caries, poor dental hygiene, root abscesses and decay.
As technology evolves, it is hoped that AI and machine learning could also aid oral cancer screening and detection. Studies show that over 54,000 new cases of oral and oropharyngeal cancer are diagnosed every year in the US (source).
AI tools provide a valuable training resource for students and qualified dentists. Today, students who are studying dental degrees can utilize AI to improve diagnostic skills and accuracy. Rather than relying solely on their judgment and interpretation skills when analyzing X-rays, for example, students can utilize feedback from AI applications to hone their skills. Training may also cover the use of AI to identify symptoms of dental issues, including decay, provide superior oral health checks and screening, and aid treatment planning.
One area that is incredibly exciting for dentists and patients is the use of AI applications for treatment planning. Orthodontics is an excellent example. AI can be used to help orthodontists and dentists to draw up customized treatment plans based on the projected movement of the teeth, the chance of needing tooth extraction and accurate estimates of the size of new teeth, which are still to erupt.
Up to 80% of patients experience a degree of dental anxiety, according to researchers (source). In many cases, a fear of the dentist can prevent patients from attending regular appointments. This increases the risk of dental issues, including decay and gum disease. AI can help to provide individuals with peace of mind and offer reassurance to help create strong relationships between patients and dental teams. Technology provides dentists with more information and accurate data. This offers opportunities for teams to explain their findings to patients and illustrate how treatments will work or what symptoms mean. Trust is vital in the dental industry.
The future looks bright for AI in dentistry. While most applications focus on detecting signs and symptoms and planning treatment for existing problems, there is a good chance that in the future, AI will offer opportunities to reduce risks to overall health by identifying risk factors and anticipating how they could affect a patient’s dental and general health.
One of the most significant benefits of AI for dentists and dental office managers is the ability to access and use data to make decisions. Away from the clinical side of dentistry, AI enables teams to evaluate operational performance and identify key business requirements and objectives. It can also provide accurate data linked to income revenues and different streams.
Technology is advancing at lightning speed. AI is already benefiting dentists and patients but, in the future, it will be an even more dominant force. AI could be used across multiple aspects of care provision and dental business management to optimize treatment outcomes, improve patient experiences, increase efficiency, save time and money and lower the risk of complex dental health issues.
An example of a company making a powerful impact on the dental industry and is currently the largest leader in dental AI, Overjet, generates accurate and actionable insights on clinical performance. They combine the power of the most advanced AI algorithms to analyze your patients’ radiographs with the rich data available in your practice management system. CEO and Co-Founder, Wardah Inam says “Overjet is utilizing AI to help create a future of dental care that is clinically precise, efficient and patient-focused. We could not be more excited about leading this change!”
Artificial Intelligence plays an increasingly influential role in the delivery of medical and dental care. AI tools are used widely in dentistry and this is a trend that will gather pace in the years to come. The main benefits of AI in the dental industry include improved diagnostics, which facilitates early intervention to enhance treatment outcomes. AI can identify signs and symptoms that may not be visible to the naked eye, and it can also be used for accurate treatment planning, training and efficient dental office management.