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Top Four Dental Industry Trends of 2022 and What They Mean to You

by Smart Mouth

Change happens so frequently in the modern age, it can be hard to keep up with every new development, trend and innovation in the dental industry. With science and technology moving faster than ever to meet the challenges of the new normal, new trends are shaping the landscape and approach for dental professionals across the country. Here are the top dental industry trends to look out for in the new year—and beyond.

 

1. Technology

3D printing is everywhere. From aerospace to the healthcare industry, and even at home, this emerging technology is creating a great alternative to the traditional production of parts, prototypes and more. This technology is also fast becoming an important part of many dental labs and practices. 3D printing can quickly create crowns and bridges saving both time and lab costs. By bringing the work into the practice, rather than an outside resource, it can improve the patient’s overall experience. 

Laser technology has fast become a more accurate and efficient approach to many dental procedures, often replacing the need for a traditional dental drill altogether. Maintaining oral health can sometimes require invasive treatments for whitening procedures. Paired with other emerging technologies like the aforementioned 3D printing, lasers are pushing the boundaries of more effective approaches to common procedures for faster, less painful patient visits.

 

2. Convenience 

The COVID-19 pandemic has helped shape a more virtual approach to nearly every aspect of our lives, and the dental industry is no different. This trend has driven more patients to virtual care whenever possible, as they seek out safe, convenient options for their dental care. Teledentistry expands the patient experience with virtual consultations and referrals, patient education and advice, helping patients get the care they need without taking any unnecessary risks. 

Subscription boxes and programs like the SmartMouth Dental Professionals Referral Program provide patients with useful tools to maintain better oral health between visits without having to leave the comfort of their homes. 

 

 3. Subscription Dental Services

Nearly a quarter of all American adults lack dental coverage, and even for those with insurance, it can be difficult to find a practice that is covered by their plan. This causes more hesitancy for patients to see their dentist for simple but important routine services, and a decline in their overall oral health. Subscription services offer an annual or monthly rate that covers services like regular cleanings, x-rays, and fillings or other procedures, providing an affordable solution for patients and guaranteed revenue for dental practices. 

 

4. Patient Engagement

With so much opposing information about dental health and care available, patients need a trusted resource to keep them educated about how to maintain their oral health safely. Understanding the connection between a healthy smile and strong mental health goes a long way in building stronger relationships with patients and helps them face the world with a smile. It’s crucial to create and maintain a strong level of engagement with patients to provide the access they need to information that genuinely helps them on their oral health journey. 

One-to-one communication and education about oral hygiene practices like brushing with fluoride toothpaste, using mouthwashes or rinses that reduce plaque, flossing daily and other important parts of oral health have become a key aspect of many practices who are providing new platforms for patient education, as well as a social media presence for more avenues of engagement. Focusing on the patient experience beyond the chair not only builds trust with your patient but provides a better foundation for continued oral care. Partnering with brands like SmartMouth provides additional tools and prepared content and assets to share on digital  platforms providing patients with additional education and engagement without having to constantly create it.

Learn more about our SmartMouth Partner Program and help your patients maintain their oral health between visits.