High-quality visualization is essential when giving patients advice on treatments such as bleaching, smile makeovers and similar therapies
Dentists who give their patients advice that they can understand will find it easier to get them on board with treatments such as bleaching, professional teeth cleaning or smile makeovers.
Competent patient counselling is playing an increasingly important part in today’s dental practices. There are several reasons for this: With a steadily increasing range of treatment options and procedures, there are more alternatives to choose from than ever before. Patients place ever higher expectations on their treatments and their levels of information keep rising. Bleaching, professional teeth cleaning and smile makeovers are only three examples of treatments where high-quality visual imagery can facilitate the consultation process with the patients.
When patients become customers
Time is clearly on the side of dentists: With people becoming more aware of health and esthetics, increasing numbers of patients are prepared to pay extra for certain dental services, or to finance them completely out of their own pockets. A beautiful smile is often seen as essential. Treatments such as professional teeth cleaning and bleaching are becoming increasingly important against such a background. However, this also means that the role of patients is changing: Increasingly, they are turning into customers and they expect to be given advice from their dentist accordingly.
Personalized solutions based on the specific needs of patients
“Patient counselling today should go beyond passing on purely medical information and should be based on the expectations and needs of the individual patient,” Dr Andreas Kurbad (Germany) advises. Patients should be given information about the benefits of dental treatments in a way they can understand and relate to. “It’s important to convince patients on an emotional level and give them the feeling that they are in the spotlight and are offered a personalized solution tailored to their specific needs.” Under these circumstances, patients will be more likely to commit their resources to the detailed, time- and cost-intensive planning and implementation of a cosmetic makeover.
A picture says more than a 1000 words
In a nutshell, patients need to be given the feeling that they are listen to and their needs are given priority. And patients must be able to understand what their dentist talks about. This does not mean that they need to know everything in detail – the consulting dentist should minimize the technical information to the necessary minimum and not bombard their patients with technical lingo. And here, as everywhere, a picture says more than a thousand words. If dentists use images to show the possibilities of a dental treatment, patients will be in an even better position to understand what they could look like if they have the treatment done.
“Patient counselling today should go beyond passing on purely medical information and should be based on the expectations and needs of the individual patient,” Dr Andreas Kurbad (Germany
A virtual mirror to visualize treatment outcomes
This is no longer wishful thinking - digital technology has turned this vision into reality. The new IvoSmile app from Ivoclar Vivadent enables dental professional to show their patients the prospective outcome of a treatment with the help of high-quality visual imagery, eliminating the need for lengthy explanations. Virtual presentations of what a cosmetic makeover could achieve make it easier for patients to understand what these treatments could do for them. Patients will find it easier to decide in favour or against a treatment. Realistic before and after images and the possibility of seeing in a “virtual mirror” of what they could look like often motivates and inspires patients to go ahead with the treatment - no matter if the intervention under consideration is “only” a bleaching procedure or an extensive procedure such as a smile makeover.