Due to the unprecedented times, patients who are seeking urgent dental care from a dentist can have access to videoconferencing services as a preferred approach for substituting face-to-face consultations.
“Tele dentistry” can play a helpful role to answer questions, provide an initial consultation regarding particular concerns and also is invaluable for promoting preventive measures.
The uses of “Tele dentistry” examples at New Horizons Dental are explained below:
Teleconsultation (Standard time 20 minutes)
Item number 919
This can be over the phone, or via a video consultation with either Facebook messenger or Zoom (A free App can be downloaded and installed https://zoom.us/).
The consultation can be regarding any concern or questions you have regarding health of the mouth.
Sometimes it is possible to angle a camera phone to take a picture of the area in the mouth you are wondering about. That can be sent through by email (general email is not a secure private link. To set up a secure email link, please ring the dental surgery.)
Oral Hygiene Instruction
Item number 141
Review of brushing and or flossing or other cleaning methods.
If you obtain disclosing tablets from a pharmacy then the appointment can run through using the disclosing tabs and where it shows plaque on teeth and gums, review cleaning methods to ensure effective.
Removal of plaque biofilm and bacteria is the number one step to keeping a healthy mouth. To clean off plaque brushing, flossing, interdental brushes are essential.
Another step, often overlooked, is tongue cleaning, with a special scraper or device. The back of the tongue is a source of many bacteria that can damage teeth and gums. Also the build-up of tongue coating can aggravate bad breath.
Item number 151
Some foods protect teeth and gums and some are damaging. The balance is reviewed with this analysis.
When you request this service, a copy of the form to complete is sent by email or whichever means is most helpful.
Recording everything you eat and drink for 7 days, then returning that record to the Dental Practice.
After it has been reviewed and analysed an appointment is scheduled for the phone or video link, then a discussion about the results and effects on dental and general health.
Letter of referral
Item number 019
Patients may require a letter of referral should dental treatment become extensive or require further assessment from a Dental Specialist.
Patients with oral health care needs can connect with the dentist in real time via a videoconference platform such as Zoom to receive dental advice and tips on preventive measures. Patients are able to send pictures of their mouth or any oral health concerns. The dentist will be able to evaluate and recommend the best option depending on the situation.
Teledentistry aims to assist the dentist with the best possible care for patients. For situations that cannot be deferred, patients may need to come into the practice for dental treatment.
Any patient who has recently undergone a dental procedure and requires follow up or has concerns with their recovery after the procedure or is presenting with an acute dental problem:
• outside of normal practising hours,
• who is unable to attend the clinic due to illness, isolation or quarantine,
• Vulnerable patients during pandemics including those who are:
• aged 70 years or older
• identify as being of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent
• pregnant; or
• the parent of a child aged under 12 months; or
• being treated for a chronic health condition; or
• immune compromised; or
• meet the current national triage protocol criteria for suspected COVID-19 infection.
Since 14th April 2020, item number 919 Teleconsultation has become available, and a number of Private Health Funds have indicated there will be a rebate amount.
Please contact your Private Health Fund to find out more information and quote the item numbers listed above on this page.
New Horizons Dental can provide a range of services via teleconsultation. Listed below are some examples:
- Preventive measures, including dietary advice and oral hygiene instruction
- Remote situations should patients have difficulty travelling
- For patients at aged care facilities
- Severe mouth, jaw or toothache, Broken or loose tooth, Trauma/ Bleeding
To make use of a Teleconsultation, please ring the Dental Practice on 07 4099 3232 to arrange an appointment time.
If there are questions about using Facebook Messenger, or Zoom for this consultation then please ring and speak to dental reception.