Type 2 diabetes has escalated to epidemic and financially catastrophic proportions, and is expected to affect one in three US adults by 2050. We already have more than 29 million diabetics in this country today; 28% remain undiagnosed.
With the well-established connection between diabetes and periodontal disease and the greater likelihood that patients will see a dentist than a physician, there is a clear opportunity for dental teams to assist in this health crisis. In-office diabetes screening provides the dental team with critical health information needed to successfully address patients’ oral health while ensuring patients are referred for the medical care they may be unaware they need.
The ADA and Code Maintenance Committee (CMC) announced the addition of a new 2018 code that will report the in-office measure of hemoglobin A1c, a blood test that provides information about a person’s average circulating blood sugar levels in the previous 3 months.
“People with poorly controlled diabetes are at greater risk for dental problems,” Dr. Ronald Riggins, chair of the CMC, said. “High blood sugar may cause dry mouth and make gum disease worse. There is a definite link of oral health to overall health, and dentists are often on the front lines of investigating systemic health.”
Identify Your Patients at Risk for Diabetes
- Family history
- High cholesterol
- Elevated blood pressure
- Periodontal disease
Check At-Risk Patients for Diabetes
Hemoglobin A1c tests can be performed in the dental office with a simple finger-stick. In just a few minutes, the test provides the patient’s average blood sugar level for the past 2-3 months classified as either normal, prediabetes, or diabetes. Patients can then be referred to a medical provider for a definitive diagnosis.
Are you frustrated by patients who skip or postpone recommended treatment? Are you tired of patients lying to you about flossing, while you watch their gums bleed? Have you ever wondered why your patients don’t seem to care about their oral health as much as you do? The truth is they do care; they just don’t understand the importance of what you’re saying.
Dental phobia and stress is high. Most patients don’t look forward to dental appointments. They clench their way thru the appointment as teeth are poked, prodded, and cleaned, waiting anxiously for the verdict at the end. All patients are hoping to hear you say is, “No cavities!” so they can escape your clutches until their next cleaning.
When you talk about pocket depths, bleeding gums, and inflammation… patients don’t understand you’re talking about an important component of their health. The typical patient thought process is that no cavities equals health. This makes it very difficult to motivate the patient to accept treatment for periodontal disease and other health needs.
To have more productive conversations with patients, you have to change how they view a dental visit. When your patients understand the impact oral health has on overall health, they will understand that healthy teeth and gums are a priority that may require additional visits and additional home care to maintain, even if they don’t have cavities.
Create more educated patients by:
- Using consistent messaging on oral health from all team members
- Relating oral health to their personal overall health, referencing their health history
- Providing educational resources that reinforce your message
For help changing how your patients view visits to your practice, request a free Total Health Workshop for your team.March 31, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Designed for easier clean-up, Multilink Automix is ideal for the cementation of indirect restorations made of silicate ceramics, oxide ceramics, metal, metal-ceramics and composite.
The Multilink Automix System generates high bonding values for long-lasting adhesion of the restoration to the tooth structure. The shade range has been broadened to include a white shade and try-in pastes, and the system now includes an Air Block Liquid Strip for improved marginal integrity.March 31, 2017 | Category Recare, Total Health
As your afternoon schedule slowly falls to pieces, have you ever wondered “why”? Why are patients (who would never dream of skipping a pap smear or other health screening) perfectly comfortable delaying or cancelling their scheduled dental care? There are two reasons.
First, we let them. We reschedule them without complaint, or ask them to call us when they are ready to rebook. No questions, no concern expressed, no detectable frustration (most of the time). We let patients off the hook and they know we will. Why aren’t we making cancellation a little less easy for them? It’s not easy for you to fill the hole created in your schedule; the least the patient can do is take the time to answer a few questions about their current oral health.
The second reason for cancellation is that patients simply don’t value the care they receive. Not that they don’t appreciate the dental team, and the work that you do. But they don’t understand how truly important it is. A hygiene visit is not “just a cleaning”, it’s one of the very few, if not the only, preventive health visits a patient will have all year. We have to educate patients about the total health services they receive during a hygiene visit, and give them a personally motivating reason to return for their next appointment. At a minimum, make sure patients understand that the hygiene visit includes a caries screening, periodontal disease screening, oral cancer screening, and potentially screenings for sleep disorders, acid reflux, diabetes, and high blood pressure as well.
Implementing an effective recare program that communicates the value of a hygiene visit is the most important thing you can do to influence the health of your patients and the profitability of the practice. The next time a patient calls to cancel, you’ll be ready to stop them.
Request your free in-office Recare Workshop.March 24, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Now there’s an adhesive that reduces those stresses without sacrificing bond strength. Introducing new Riva Bond LC, the light-cured adhesive for direct restorations that combines high bond strength with reduced stress at the restorative interface for longer-lasting restorations.
The Next Generation of Dental Adhesives Riva Bond LC from SDI uses a unique and proprietary stress reduction technology to deliver several important advantages over conventional adhesives. With Riva Bond LC, you get stress-free bonding, high bond strength, excellent radiopacity, and less patient sensitivity—all in one easy-to-use light-cured adhesive.March 17, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Venus White Teeth Whitening Systems consist of three proven whitening products that work independently or together to provide a comprehensive teeth whitening solution. These include Venus White Max, a dentist-applied, in-office whitening gel; Venus White Pro, which combines take-home whitening gel with custom-made trays; and Venus White Ultra pre-filled, disposable whitening trays.March 3, 2017 | Category Product Videos
What does “clean” really mean? If your instruments are not completely clean before placing in the autoclave, they may still harbor harmful pathogens, even after the autoclave process is complete.
The Miele G 7881 Dental Thermal Disinfector washes, rinses, dries and disinfects, leaving your dental instruments completely ready for sterilization, the final step in the cleaning process. It removes blood that has been dried on instruments for up to six hours and provides a level of disinfection that far exceeds OSHA standards for the reduction of microbial contamination.February 24, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Imprint™ 4 is the logical choice for today’s busy dental practices. It delivers the shortest intra-oral setting time for real time savings. It helps to reduce stress and chair time for your patients—and it offers clinically proven tear strength and super hydrophilicity for extremely accurate detail reproduction.February 10, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Offering significant benefits to the clinician, G-CEM™ LinkAce provides optimal self-curing properties for PFM and lithium disilicate restorations, high bond durability to Zirconia in one step, exceptional color stability, unsurpassed wear resistance and easy excess cement removal.
Available in four esthetic shades—A2 universal, AO3, BO1 and translucent—G-CEM™ LinkAce™ requires no refrigeration, so there is no delay waiting for the material to come to room temperature.January 30, 2017 | Category Product Videos
Estelite Sigma Quick allows you to restore a variety of clinical restorations, by reducing the amount of inventory in your composite closet. Estelite Sigma Quick contains spherical fillers (200 nanometers average particle size), that diffuse light providing a more forgiving shade match throughout a range of shades.
In addition, the spherical fillers contribute to excellent initial polishability and long-term polish retention. Learn how Estelite Sigma Quick enhances your restoration time, decreases composite inventory, and provides the best alternative for your patient.
Estelite Sigma Quick was rated by Dental Advsior as “Top Composite”.
2-Year Clinical Performance by Dental Advisor
Consultant comments below:
– “After two years in service, these restorations continue to retain the esthetics achieved at placement.”
– “This material has exhibited excellent resistance to chipping and fracture in the anterior and posterior regions over the past two years.”
– “After two years of placing this material, the excellent handling, rapid cure and esthetics continue to make this my material of choice.”