Patient follow-through can present one of the most difficult aspects of endodontic practice. As your endodontic billing specialist, SB Dental Solutions Dental Billing company shares our clients’ concerns regarding incomplete planned treatments. In many cases, fear accounts for the lack of patient follow-through. After all, root canals are one of the most common phobias in the United States. However, research into endodontic treatment now suggests that root canal work isn't as scary as it seems.
According to a study from the University of Adelaide, when researchers surveyed over one thousand randomly selected dental patients, “Patients who had root canal work reported similar oral health-related quality of life as people who had other types of dental work.”
The study compared root canals to other treatments, such as tooth extraction, restorations, repairs, gum treatment, and cleanings. Not only did root canals prove no worse in terms of pain during treatment and recovery, but patients benefited from the endodontic interventions as they cured the pain of dental infection.
Hopefully, endodontists will find these results helpful in encouraging their fearful patients to complete needed treatment. Rossi-Fedele, Professor at the Adelaide school of dentistry and co-author of the study emphasizes the importance of considering patient perspectives in dentistry, saying:
“Treatment outcomes need to be re-examined from a patient-based perspective using self-reported measures as this more accurately reflects the patients' perception of treatment outcomes and the effect it has on their overall well-being.
"Patient-reported treatment outcomes are now the principal driving force behind treatment needs, as opposed to clinician-based treatment outcomes.
"With this change in emphasis, the perspectives of patients and their relatives are important factors in identifying need for treatment, treatment planning, and determining outcomes from any health care intervention as part of shared decision making.”
By listening to patient perspectives, fears, and feedback, endodontists will see better patient follow-through and higher patient satisfaction. Better follow-through and satisfaction will allow endodontists to bill more complete root canals, improve their revenue, and reap the rewards of specialized endodontic billing assistance.
A 2021 American Dental Association (ADA) report finds an increase in stress related dental conditions. Recent times have presented many increased stressors across the world, from massive wide-spread wildfires to a global pandemic larger than any in over 100 years. Unstable world and US economic futures, record unemployment rates, and social and political upheaval also contribute to higher rates of anxiety, stress, and panic related health complications. Dental disease is no different.
According to the ADA instances of grinding and clenching teeth have increased by 71% in the last year. The report also found 63% more chipped or cracked teeth, and 62% more Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ or TMD) related symptoms. What’s more, the vast majority of Dentists surveyed have observed that these stress-related symptoms have increased in their practice, with 70% of respondents reporting the trend.
According to ADA representatives, global conditions relate directly to these findings. The report added, “Our polling has served as a barometer for pandemic stress affecting patients and communities seen through the eyes of dentists. The increase over time suggests stress-related conditions have become substantially more prevalent since the recent COVID-19.”
Meanwhile, after a significant portion of Americans were vaccinated, dental office patients report higher levels of confidence in returning to the dentist. 90% of patients report that they’ve already been back to the dentist or plan to go soon. Dentists can expect an increased patient load in addition to increases in treatment for stress-related conditions. This means a major expansion of insurance verifications, claims submissions, patient bills, and all dental billing responsibilities.
What can SB Dental Solutions Dental Billing Company do to help with this increase? By relieving your staff of the burden of dental billing, we allow our clients more time and resources to address patient concerns. We can ensure better reimbursement for treating stress-conditions by assessing insurance contracts and staying informed of billing guidelines in these areas. Finally, we offer accurate patient portion estimates and handle payment plans, which helps remove financial barriers to cosmetic restorations for stress related chips or cracks.