Dr. Rashmi Patel

Dr. Rashmi Patel on Innovation in Dentistry

in Opinion by

With the advances made over the past few decades in the dental profession, it’s hard to believe that there are people who still dread making a trip to see a dentist for a routine check-up. Thanks to recent technological innovations, dental procedures with a well-known, and perhaps overstated or exaggerated reputation for patient discomfort has become a veritable walk in the park. While many used to reflexively cringe upon hearing the term “root canal,” for example, patients who have recently undergone a root canal know that the minimally invasive procedure is now quite comfortable, and hardly deserving of its former reputation.

Due to technological advances as well as procedural innovations developed by the dentistry community at large, both patients and dentists have reaped significant rewards. Patients benefit from vast improvements in the efficacy of dental procedures, not to mention the increased comfort and minimally invasive nature of these new or improved procedures. Dentists benefit from new technologies that introduce a higher level of precision and efficiency into a wide range of methods, including quite a few procedures that are becoming increasingly popular among patients.

According to Dr. Rashmi Patel, dental implant procedures are among the many dental procedures enjoying increasing levels of popularity among patients due in part to recent technological innovations. Based out of Northwestern Connecticut, Rashmi Patel offered several examples to illustrate how innovation has sparked increased interest in dental implants while also enabling dentists to complete the procedure precisely and efficiently.

The graduate of the University of Buffalo School of Dental Medicine cited the work of several tech industry firms, including Neocis, a startup operating out of Miami, Florida. The South Florida startup company recently secured approval from the FDA for the robotic navigation system it created specifically for use in dental implants. According to the company, the newly developed technology provides “pre-operative and intraoperative guidance,” which in turn reduces the time necessary to complete the procedure while also enhancing accuracy.

In a recent release, its technology had secured FDA approval, the Miami-based startup company described how its technology – the system itself is called “Yomi” – could improve dental implant procedures, explaining that a dental surgeon could easily plan and program the procedure in advance. The robotic navigation would then guide the drill under the supervision of the surgeon, who retains complete control over thanks to what the startup describes its “assistive technology.”

As Dr. Patel points out, every surgical procedure, including dental implants, demands an uncommon degree of precision. While dentists have been remarkably successful in performing free-hand implants, anything that enhances the precision of a surgical procedure is beneficial for both the patient and the dentist.

Even with all of the impressive recent advances in dental technology, industry professionals like Dr. Patel believe that technological innovation will only continue to positively alter the dental profession in ways that we cannot possibly foresee today, and these changes will undoubtedly continue to benefit both dentists and patients alike.

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