Imagine walking into your office unlocking the door, turning to your smart switch, instead of the traditional toggle switch, disarming your alarm system, turning on the heater or air conditioning to preset temperatures, turning on the lights, compressors, and hardware from that one smart switch. Walking to the front desk, turning on your patient check in a computer, as well as all of the other computers in the office. The computers are small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, the monitors are far larger than the computers. By this point in time, a proprietary operating system such as windows will have become irrelevant most likely running Android or some other Linux, as everything is based in the cloud. The staff sits down to prepare for the day, the entire phone system now a complete internet based Voice over Internet Protocol system VoIP, so you see more people able to use smartphones to operate the office phones. The phones for the office have been charging overnight in a case using UV-C rays to disinfect them each day. The first patient comes in for the day, goes to the check in computer signs in all electronically, and the patient management software automatically pulls up their history and everything, so the staff is aware. We bring the patient back to the operatory there are no TV screens on the walls, no speakers either, it’s been replaced with an immersive Holographic Augmented Virtual Reality smart glasses headset system for the patient to be able to use a personal screen with a switch the dentist can use to still directly interface with the patient when needing to be worked on. Perhaps the patient needs some work done and requires an impression, well no impression trays are needed, simply pull out a 3D Intraoral scanner to take a 3D impression of their mouth in STL or 3MF file format or CBCT in a football helmet out outing DICOM DCM. As the dentist is scanning, they are not looking at a laptop screen but rather a pair of Augmented Reality smart glasses that allow the dentist to see the world as normal, but with a 3D projection as well on the glasses, able to be manipulated by the dentist. The dentist reaches out into air manipulating the 3D models only he or she can see through these AR smart glasses. The 3D Intraoral Scanner is so precise, that the dentist can diagnose surface issues and cracks the naked eye can’t even reveal. If the dentist sees there are issues that require lab work, the dentist can have a mini in-office lab in the back to 3D print (Additive) or mill (Subtractive) any materials they might need, or send it off to an offsite lab to do the work. The dentist would not have to send physical models of impressions to labs, but rather drop it in a HIPAA compliant file storage network that allows the lab and the dentist to share files back and forth securely, and instantly. Once the dental technician receives the file most of the work can potentially be done without printing any physical materials until the end product needs to be made. If materials are required to be made they can be 3D printed out of ceramic, porcelain, carbon fiber, fiberglass, Kevlar, or other materials required. Imagine being able to cut down on time and money making physical materials for mocking up models for dental work, when it can all be virtualized, and have results much more expeditiously. Some dentists may even opt for a Chairside Computer Aided Design (CAD) system with Virtual Articulation and Jaw Movement Recording, so they can get the 3D models needed right at the patient chair side, and potentially able to run their own miniature lab in the back of the office. Dentists one day may become vertically integrated to not only service mouth, but the design and manufacture the hardware for the services rendered.
Author(s): Alon Ganon