Get the most out of your intraoral camera

March 21, 2012

Purchasing an intraoral camera is one of the fastest, easiest and highest returning investments a dentist can make. A quality intraoral camera system can generate a full return on investment in as little as 1 to 3 months.

Purchasing an intraoral camera is one of the fastest, easiest and highest returning investments a dentist can make. A quality intraoral camera system can generate a full return on investment in as little as 1 to 3 months.

Unfortunately, many manufacturers concentrate on selling one or two units to as many practices as possible. At Digital Doc (digi-doc.com), we believe in helping our customers establish an integration plan and physical use protocol to guarantee success.

Make a plan

Many doctors purchase a single intraoral camera because they think it will increase their hygiene department production. Typically it does, but the increased production is often temporary. Consistently using the intraoral camera everyday is short lived. Why? There likely wasn’t an integration plan.

To achieve true integration in a busy dental practice, you must implement repeatable systems, and the manufacturer should be involved in making that happen. When you made your last technology purchase, did the manufacturer present you and your team members with an integration plan? “Oh yes, my plan is to purchase a camera and give it to my hygienist,” is not the type of plan I am referring to.

A few things to consider

When it comes to complete integration and planning, it’s important to think about how the camera will be used on each patient and if your team is educated on how to set the office up for success.

Did you consider making the system readily available and easily accessible? Do you plan to share the camera with the rest of your team? If so, you may want to reconsider.

Sharing an intraoral camera with a team member is like owning a gym membership. The initial excitement is enough motivation to keep you in the gym, but when the excitement wears off you will find any excuse to keep from using that gym membership. You have failed to incorporate the gym membership into your daily lifestyle, so while you’re still paying for the membership you’ll never realize the physical benefits. The same can happen with your intraoral camera.

Use it for every patient

Using an intraoral camera on some of the patients some of the time is not the answer. Today’s dentistry is about speed, comfort, quality and convenience for both the patient and practitioner. Digital Doc has worked with thousands of offices across the world, and knows that if something is not available at your fingertips it never will be used.

Think about where you’re going to keep the camera. Should you put it on a mobile cart? Nope. What about setting it up so it has to be taken out of a drawer and plugged in? That’s probably not a good idea, either.

If your camera sits next to your highspeed handpiece or prophy angle and is ready to go when you pick it up, you’ll be more likely to use it every time-as long as your team follows a system protocol for every patient. When technologies like intraoral cameras demonstrate such a quick return on investment, the only consideration that should be made is how to use it as much as possible in daily practice.

See the results

At Digital Doc, our highly trained and motivated account managers will preview an integration plan for your office and then detail a use strategy for your team. After purchasing Iris, Digital Doc’s digital USB intraoral camera, your team will be trained on how to take 12 pictures in less than two minutes. Envision a complete chart with 12 high-quality pictures as part of every patient’s legal record.

Digital Doc also provides a wall poster that team members can reference to remind themselves of the 12 critical shots. Can you picture every operatory producing 12 pictures on every patient, everyday, from now until you retire? Now consider how that will raise your productivity and give you the return on investment you’ve always wanted.