The most obvious answer for patients seeking out help with a tooth problem is to head on over to their dentist to get it treated. General and family dentists are often the most sought out due to their ability to treat various problems with ease. But when complex situations come up that require special attention, then what can dentists in these situations rely on to treat the issue? By tackling these complex cases, interdisciplinary dentistry helps bridge the gap between experience and treatment and has been able to help many dentists expand their practices and better treat patients. So, what is interdisciplinary dentistry?
What is Interdisciplinary Dentistry All About?
Patients experiencing tooth problems, including tooth canal infections, traumatized/cracked teeth, and even mouth issues such as gum disease, can’t always be treated through the same methods. In dentistry, there are a variety of approaches that dentists can take to treat the issue at hand. These approaches, however, depend on the circumstances, and even the most straightforward treatment may not be the best option that the patient wants. For instance, an affected tooth with severe tooth decay may not benefit from an implant, especially if the use of the implant will cause aesthetic issues such as gum damage and teeth blackening.
A multidisciplinary approach attempts to resolve this issue by tackling the patient’s dental problem by incorporating different fields of dentistry and their techniques into practice. This includes endodontists, periodontists, oral surgeons, and even orthodontists to tackle complex cases. Dentists working to further incorporate these methods will often get certifications in these various fields and go through a series of steps to address the problem more fully for the patient. In these scenarios, the best way to give you an idea of how it’s done is through a series of questions, such as:
- What are the goals and aspirations of the patient? Another way to reframe this question is by asking what does the patient desire for their outcome and how can that be incorporated into their treatment?
- What’s the biological stance for their condition? This question is about looking at the pathologies involved with the patient to understand their cause better and narrow down the proper treatment.
- What would I do if it were me? By combining all aspects of diagnosis and treatment, the dentists can determine clinical approaches based on their judgment, preferences, and areas of the dental discipline that they have the most experience with to treat the patient.
Improving Patient’s Care With Interdisciplinary Dentistry
An interdisciplinary approach is probably one of the best ways that patients can be treated. Not only that, it allows dentists to further expand on their field of expertise and give their new and reoccurring patients more options for treatment. Combining multiple disciplines means that dentists can now tackle more complex cases without having to refer their patients to other practices, giving their patients an all-encompassing experience that treats their problems on hand.