By Guest Writer Don Khouri, Executive Coach, Fortune Management

When I was a Junior in College in the mid-1980s, I took a full-semester, four-credit course on Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI was in its infancy, its societal implications significant but unknown. It has grown a great deal since then, and exponentially in the last year. Tools like ChatGPT and Bard make AI accessible to everyone with an internet connection. At Fortune, we are firm believers in using technology to enhance your practice.

Dentists can leverage AI in various ways to enhance patient care and improve their practices. Here are some ways AI can be beneficial:

Diagnosis and Treatment Planning: One of the most significant contributions of AI to dentistry is in diagnosis and treatment planning. Advanced AI algorithms can analyze dental images, such as X-rays and scans, with a level of precision that was once thought impossible. Tools like Pearl have emerged as leaders in this technology, helping dentists detect issues like cavities, fractures, and gum disease at an early stage. Early diagnosis means better treatment planning, and ultimately, improved patient outcomes.

Patient Engagement: AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants have transformed patient engagement in dental practices. These intelligent assistants can provide patients with information on common dental issues, assist with appointment scheduling, and offer follow-up care instructions. This not only enhances patient satisfaction but also ensures that patients are well-informed and involved in their own dental care.

Patient Communication and Follow-ups: Patient communication is a critical aspect of maintaining a successful dental practice. AI can automate this process by sending appointment reminders, post-treatment follow-up messages, and surveys for collecting patient feedback. Tools like Adit are highly recommended for handling patient communication and follow-ups. This automation not only keeps patients engaged but also helps in enhancing the overall quality of care.

Patient Monitoring: For patients with chronic dental conditions, AI can enable continuous monitoring. This is particularly valuable for tracking orthodontic progress remotely. Technologies like SureSmile have been developed to make patient monitoring more efficient and accurate. Patients benefit from timely adjustments, and dentists can provide better care with access to real-time data.

Oral Health Apps: Dentists can recommend AI-driven mobile apps to patients for oral health monitoring and reminders for regular check-ups and home care. The Oral-B app uses AI to help users monitor their brushing habits and oral care routines, providing personalized feedback. This not only fosters better oral hygiene but also strengthens the patient-dentist relationship.

By leveraging AI tools and technologies, dentists can benefit from more accurate diagnoses, improved patient engagement, streamlined communication, advanced monitoring capabilities, and enhanced practice efficiency. If you’re interested in exploring the possibilities for your dental practice, we offer a comprehensive Practice Analysis and Technology Assessment. Click here to sign up and take the first step towards embracing the future of dentistry. Your patients and your practice will thank you for it.