Dentistry has evolved leaps and bounds from its formative years until the present. However, a pandemic creates essentiality to revisit the basic annals of Dentistry and the way ahead, keeping in cognisance the solitary purpose of quality oral health care.
The current state of affairs has forced everyone away from each other, but closer to technology, Dentistry is no exception; however, some facets which form an indispensable part of Dentistry have remained aloof from this transformation.
The core areas of Dental Check-up for children, adults and the elderly using Tele dentistry, Dental Education using e-lecture videos using Digital and Social media, capacity building in Dental manpower and surveillance using Geographic information Systems and mobile technology to monitor oral hygiene behaviours and effective feedback systems are the frontiers that require swift digitalisation.
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Tele dentistry has failed to pick up the pace despite becoming common in routine dental consultations. Dental education from chalk and talk has evolved to printed IEC material. Still, in this age of Digital media, the absence of Quality Digital education videos and their accessibility to them remains questionable.
The amalgamation of Dental manpower and surveillance with GIS can be promising beyond measure. However, there is a lack of implementation due to the lack of centralisation of Geospatial Data. Mobile technology to monitor oral hygiene behaviours is far from realistic due to the shortage of digital literacy, especially in the elderly.
Dentistry can move headfirst with its full potential when holistic digitalisation includes seminal aspects. The execution of digitalisation of fundamental areas discussed can create an opportunity to make a real paradigm shift from a disease-centred approach to a patient-centred care approach and help future-ready.
The Faculty of Dental Sciences, SGT University, Gurugram, started as SGT Dental College Hospital & Research Institute in 2002 and is now among the best dental colleges in Delhi NCR. The faculty has nine departments, which have highly experienced and energetic faculty members with ethical and scientific mindsets to carry forward the science of Dentistry, laying focus on research & innovation in Dentistry and Applied Sciences.
Dr. Abhinav Bhargava
Department of Public Health Dentistry
Faculty of Dental Sciences