Only one thing remains constant in the field of dentistry – CHANGE! The changes in dentistry through the last four decades have been sometimes frightening, often amazing, and always challenging.
When I graduated dental school, dentists were routinely treating patients without wearing gloves! That changed in the mid 1980’s with the advent of AIDS and Universal Precautions (treating all patients as if they were carrying the AIDS virus).
The added precautions initially were stressful, not unlike the stress of reopening the office in the height of the COVID pandemic. But the dental community, as always, adapted to the times.
In 1989 the intra-oral camera was introduced. This was an amazing and exciting, albeit expensive, addition to the dental office.
It enabled the dentist to see and show, in color, what was going on inside the patient’s mouth. Patients could make treatment decisions based on physical proof in addition to the dentist’s recommendation.
Although the first modern dental implant was placed in a human’s jaw in 1965, it was several decades before dental implants became mainstream in the general dental office. The implant allows the dentist to provide a permanent replacement for missing natural teeth.
Patients who are resigned to wearing removable full and partial dentures for the remainder of their lives embraced this breakthrough. Intra-oral dental mapping with digital scanners is an exciting area of dental advancement that has emerged into mainstream use over the last decade.
The scanner, which is used for treatment and diagnostics, stitches together hundreds (even thousands) of photos to create a 3D model of the patient’s mouth. No longer are impression trays with goopy material needed! The common thread to these changes and technological advances is that the dental professional must constantly change and grow.
Continual learning and investing are essential for the dentist to “stay on top of his game” and provide the very best dental care possible. Call our office at 215-364-2420 to schedule an appointment. www.buckscountydentaldesign.com.