Everywhere you look, there’s another COVID-19 discussion that has pushed people to rethink their hygiene habits, self-care choices, and overall behavior. You’ll see people washing their hands much more frequently, some of them regularly cleaning their hands with sanitizers, and taking better care of their tech with wet wipes made for that particular purpose. In the midst of it all, among so many healthy and good habits we’ve embraced, have we taken better care of our oral health, too?
It seems that the interest in dental services among regular folk has plummeted during the pandemic – out of fear of getting the dreaded viral infection for a mere checkup, but also out of frugality. Now that the health crisis is subsiding and people are slowly going back to their health routines, the dental industry is taking on some new challenges and facing specific changes. Here’s what to expect.
Digital marketing for every dental practice
For the duration of the pandemic, the reduced number of visits has pushed more dentists to start leveraging digital marketing as a way to gain more visibility and visits. With the help of teledentistry, they have also started providing certain types of services, assistance, and giving advice to their patients, in an attempt to improve their communication.
Through social media, advertising, SEO, and content creation, the entire dental industry has started flourishing online. More dental practices now exist on various online platforms in addition to their own websites, and they interact with patients daily to help maintain those connections for longer.
Moving to e-commerce for dentists
Much like digital marketing has become a godsend for dental practices in times of the pandemic, e-commerce platforms have become more appealing for dentists as well. Practically every dental practice can now find a reliable dental equipment provider online and make sure they have all the necessary equipment in stock and ready for use at any time.
Instead of wasting hours of their time looking for perfect products and equipment, dentists now use online selling platforms to find the most trusted suppliers. Add to that, they can find online reviews to make sure they’re on the right track.
3D printing to help improve the service
Not too keen on changing up what works, dentists are often reluctant to change their existing modes of operation, especially when it comes to their finest, most delicate work, such as setting up dental prosthetics and braces.
Thanks to 3D printing and modeling technology, dentists are now relying heavily on these machines to provide much more precise dental designs and solutions for their patients. Not to mention that this is a far more cost-effective alternative, as they won’t need to make nearly as many alterations and corrections as they normally would with manual labor.
Already massively applied in different industries, AI is finally beginning to be used in dentistry as much as it should have been years ago. Known to be slow to adapt to new technology, preferring to stick to what they trust, dentists have finally said yes to AI in the field of dental diagnostics in particular, and especially during the pandemic.
We’ve all been there: asking for advice from a dozen different dentists on what we perceive as one and the same issue, only to get a dozen different treatment suggestions. AI might not be capable, nor should it replace a pair of experienced dentist’s hands, but it is definitely helping dentists improve their accuracy and treatment based on smarter diagnostics.
Sustainability in dentistry
Going green is gaining momentum, for many different reasons, and no industry is left on the sidelines. In fact, it’s entirely up to individual practitioners and business owners to step up to the change and make sure they’ve done their best to implement it. In the world of dentistry, sustainability is manifesting itself through eco-friendly products such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, more focus on recycling, and natural supplements that help enhance our oral health.
In 2021 and beyond, more dental practices will need to focus on reducing their carbon footprint and taking on a greener approach to the business itself. Modern-day patients are careful about choosing brands and businesses that share their values, which is why sustainability is making headway even in dentistry.
In the hopes of improving our dental health, but also pushing the industry forward as a whole, these trends are slowly, but surely reshaping how dentistry is perceived and what dentists are doing to build their businesses better.