DENTAL HEALTH 2017 Dentistry in the digital age There’s much to smile about as dentistry advances into a fast-paced, precision-guided digital age

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the next generation of dentists will be digitally trained with the latest cohorts benefiting from huge investment in equipment at training schools such as the King’s College London Dental Institute, based at Guy’s Hospital. “We are training the dentists of the future and want to future-proof their education across the 40 years of their practising lifetime,” says Dr Rupert Austin, clinical lead for digital dentistry at the Institute. Equipping dentists with 3D scanners and displays can draw patients into their treatment. “Patients will be able to take home 3D scans of their mouth to show friends, family and children,” he adds. “The technology helps us pass more control to the patient by engaging them.” The main uptake has been through private dentistry, but research by the Institute has highlighted a strong return on investment with a digital cost of £21 for a restoration compared to the £200 for conventional impression materials and laboratory technician work. “Research shows it could save NHS funds because it makes treatments better, safer, faster and it reduces the amount of time a patient spends in the dental chair,” says Dr Austin. “There will be ‘Tommy traditionals’ who are happy with their processes, but the NHS has a strong mission to drive the uptake of digital dentistry and our trust, Guy’s and St Thomas’, is adopting the best of digital technology so the new dentists will be digital natives driving the adoption curve in the profession. “Patients will also demand it. I have seen it in my own practice. They feel so much engaged as they see it on the touch screen, and can zoom in and out and tell their friends and family, who often then want their teeth scanned.”
Period28 Jul 2017
Held atThe Times, United Kingdom


  • Digital Dentistry