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Virtual Dentistry and Shark-like Tooth Regeneration on the Horizon

DentalPlans.com Discusses How Technology is Revolutionizing Dental Care

Plantation, FL 33324 (February 08, 2018)

In honor of National Toothache Day, celebrated on February 9 (tomorrow), DentalPlans.com looks forward to continuing its mission and helping to create a future of happier, healthier smiles more affordably. The company discusses breakthrough technologies and trends that can prevent oral disease and restore dental health, as well as new ways to make treatments affordable to all.

Looking Ahead: Dental Care Reimagined
Medical researchers and tech developers are exploring exciting new ways to bring better dental health to everyone. DentalPlans.com believes that the current developments likely to have the most impact in the near future are the following:

Virtual Dentistry: Tech-driven dental treatment will gain traction this year, with orthodontia leading the way. In-person visits to dentists will still be an essential part of the orthodontic process, but treatments may include basic follow-up examinations conducted via a mobile app, with custom-made disposable devices delivered directly to patients. This emerging market is likely to experience some growing pains before it matures, as patients and dental professionals work to find the sweet spot between quality care, convenience, and cost. And, understandably, virtual dental care is a supplement, not a replacement, for hands-on dentistry.

Augmented Reality: Fear of what one's smile will look like after major dental treatment can make the experience even more stressful. Augmented reality can enable patients to see a virtual preview of their new smile, eliminating worries or uncertainties and providing confidence and realistic expectations before a lengthy treatment process such as orthodontia or a smile makeover. Additionally, patients may be able to work with their dentist to customize their new smile exactly to their liking (within reason, of course), by tweaking the size, shape, and placement of their new teeth. The final image can then be used as a reference model when creating dentures or dental implant crowns. Swiss technical university ETH Zurich's startup spinoff Kapanu is doing some interesting research in this area.

Bitcoin for Dental: There is a growing number of cryptocurrency projects focused on medical care. One such venture, Dentacoin, is exploring the idea of using Bitcoin and Blockchain technology to meet the demand for accessible, affordable dental care. These technologies are still emerging—Bitcoin in particular—so interest in more established options such as dental savings plans, medical tourism, health care savings accounts, and in-house dental practice payment plans will also continue to grow dramatically as people increasingly search for affordable, innovative healthcare options.

Shark Smiles: Sharks and other creatures replace broken or missing teeth, so why can't humans? Medical scientists believe that we can, and research continues into methods that will enable us to activate our tooth-regeneration superpowers. Among the most recent promising discoveries is a medication already used to treat Alzheimer's Disease that also seems to enhance the ability to regenerate dentine, the substance that lies beneath tooth enamel. Other studies are underway using technologies such as low-power lasers to stimulate renewed dentin cell growth.

Affordable Dental Care Right Now
While waiting for these new technologies and options to become available, it is important to take care of one's oral health now. The best place to start is to make an appointment for a checkup with a dentist. Tooth decay, which leads to oral diseases and other health problems, can be almost completely avoided with regular preventive dental care.

"Unfortunately, far too many people can't fit dental checkups into their budgets. But dental problems don't go away no matter how hard you ignore them—instead the situation gets worse and compromises your oral and overall health," said Bill Chase, vice president of marketing for DentalPlans.com.

Dental savings plans, an affordable alternative to traditional dental insurance, makes dental care affordable. Members receive discounts on dental care from a nationwide network of thousands of participating dentists. Savings range from 10%-60%, depending on the plan and the dental procedure. To learn more about the advantages of dental savings plans visit www.dentalplans.com.

"The future of dental care is really exciting," said Chase. "But to me, the most thrilling news of all would be that every American finally has access to quality, affordable dental care. Great, new treatments, as well as the best of modern dentistry, to prevent dental disease and restore smiles, need to be within everyone's budget."

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