Is this going to damage my tooth? This is the most frequent question I hear from almost all of my patients on a daily basis, regardless of the procedure in question. Whether it is changing a filling, sandblasting after tartar removal, or even bleaching. The “age of Information” revolutionized the way we think and work, but one side effect is also the fact that our patients are even more opinionated and all-knowing. The main fear they have is basically unnecessary prepping of the teeth, even when we have a clear clinical indication to do so. Basically, we live in an era where information, curated or not, permanently distorts the patient’s ability to trust his doctor and his indications. “Non-invasive” is a blessing from our point of view, but a well-established curse as well.
Smile design to the rescue
As technology today gives us the possibility to be non-invasive or minimally invasive, we still lack a common language to better explain our process to the patient. I say a common language because in order for me to explain a treatment plan I must create a story that my patient can visualize, and understand its implications and the reason why it is necessary. This can be challenging to achieve using traditional communication tools in telling a modern story.
Smilecloud as a tool comes in handy especially for converting our “all-knowing” patient into an understanding and trusting patient. Photography and design tools help us introduce patients to what is possible and what is not, using a visual language that is much easier to understand.