Digital Intraoral Sensors: What Makes One Brand Different from the Next?

It’s a well-known fact that digital sensors offer greater image quality than their film counterparts. But they also have a reputation for being easy to break and complicated to use, which begs the question: are they worth the investment? The answer is yes—as long as you know what to look for.

High image quality should be at the top of your priority list for intraoral sensor technology. This is the key to keeping your diagnostic capabilities at the highest level. In addition, the ideal intraoral sensor is designed with ergonomics and durability in mind to ensure patient comfort and guard against breakage. Ease of use is also a must, because you want a sensor that will facilitate—and not complicate—your workflow.  All of these features should be your baseline to measure against as you choose the right intraoral sensor for your practice.

Watch the following video to see how the manufacturing process at Carestream Dental ensures its sensors meet and exceed the expectations of dental health professionals.

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Intraoral Scanners—Saving the Earth, One Impression at a Time

Conventional impressions in landfill graphicDoctors are always looking for ways to save—save teeth, save patients time, save money. What about saving the environment? Without even realizing it, dentistry has a huge impact in the Earth: plastic impression trays pile up in landfills, paper charting can use up to 10,000 pieces of paper a year. The overarching solution is to switch to digital solutions, e.g., digital scanning instead of using impression material, digital charting instead of paper files. Today, in honor of Earth Day, we’ll take closer look at one such digital solution that can decrease dentistry’s footprint on the environment—intraoral scanning.

Let’s compare some of the aspects of the traditional impression workflow with using an intraoral scanner and how each affects the environment:

 

Traditional Impression

Environmental Impact Digital Impression Environmental Impact

Plastic tray to take impression

Ends up in landfill; 450 years to break down Few consumables, no trays whatsoever

Minimal

Polyvinyl siloxane (PVS) impression

Ends up in landfill; never breaks down Impression is digital, no physical impression

None

Courier drives to practice to pick up impression

More cars on the road; carbon emissions Digital impression is sent via secure portal to lab

None

OR Impression is shipped to lab

Paper, cardboard or styrofoam packaging; fuel used by delivery truck or airplane

Digital impression is sent via secure portal to lab

None

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HIPAA and the Cloud

“Theft and loss amount to 62% of reported data breaches.”

Are you afraid of some sinister hacker lurking in cyberspace ready to pounce on your dental office data? Are you at risk of a dental data breach?

If you experience a significant (500 or more records) data breach, you are subject to onerous and expensive HIPAA rules of notification—and even possible fines. A data breach is a real and potentially serious problem for dental offices.

However, very few reported medical dental data breaches are the result of hackers. According to the Health and Human Services website, the biggest type of breach—by far, at about 50 percent—is theft. Not theft of data, but theft of a computer. Burglars break into the office and steal a computer or someone takes a backup from the backseat of a car. Twelve percent of data breaches are loss. Again—not lost data—lost hardware, a misplaced laptop or thumb drive. Theft and loss amount to 62 percent of reported data breaches. Continue reading

The Cost Issue and Questions to ask Yourself

The provision of affordable treatment is the major issue facing our healthcare system. All other problems flow from that.

As a general rule, patients care about quality outcomes and the overall experience of a healthcare encounter. They do not care as much about cost if they do not pay directly for treatment.

When money is the only object treatment is denied or the cheapest alternative is mandated. How many times have you had patients refuse treatment because their insurance will not cover it? Way too many. Continue reading