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Using BiteFX Animations & Patient Photos to "Sell" Invisalign

Posted by Stuart Harman on Fri, Jan 10, 2020 @ 14:01 PM

From the desk of Stu Harman, our support and coaching expert. In this article Stu presents how one Invisalign provider dentist uses BiteFX software in combination with patient photographs to encourage patients who's condition may be correctd by Invisalign therapy to undergo Invisalign treatment to correct their occlusal issues.

Typical Workup

At the time of the patient's initial exam visit, the doctor's dental assistant will take intraoral pictures of the patient's teeth and used them in combination with their BiteFX software to briefly explain to the patient why their teeth look the way they do, and the underlying causes. Her discussion is usually followed by a more detailed consultation with the doctor, who also uses the BiteFX animations in combination with photographs for the more formal discussion with his patient.


Consultation Description

To begin, the DA takes intraoral pictures of the problem areas she wanted the patient to see. The picture set will typically included:

  • A separate photograph for every tooth in the mouth,
  • Facial photographs of the molar/premolar areas if abfractions are visible, and
  • Right and left closed mouth occlusion.
With photography completed and ready to show, BiteFX animations are used first to help the patient understand the mechanics of normal occlusion and malocclusion on teeth, and how their malocclusion is affecting the patient's teeth, muscles and joints. The following is a presentation the assistant created and uses routinely for this preliminary discussion with the patient.
Anitas Presentation V4

Here is the paraphrased description of the discussion she provided to a 72 year old patient using her presentation, but also represents the same conversation she has with many of their patients during the initial exam who are eligible for Invisalign treatment.
Canine Guidance - "What I'm showing you is that, in a perfect mouth, we have what we call 'Canine Guidance'. The eye tooth is directing the forces of your back teeth for chewing."
Lack of Canine Guidance - "In your case, you've actually lost the canine guidance. You've worn it down. This is just because of the way your teeth are shaped and the way they came together all your life. Watch very closely how two of these teeth are hitting together on the hills of the upper and lower tooth. Even if your teeth were properly positioned, there's always a possibility of this happening. The way the mountains of your teeth come together are hitting harder at this point. As a result, a rocking motion occurs and the ligament that is around this tooth is getting irritated and annoyed. As a result, it's pulling up on the gum. That chronic rocking is eventually going to break a piece of your tooth out; we call that an abfraction."
Molars: Guidance Comparison - "Other things that we see evidence of in your mouth are in the molars. The constant back and forth has irritated the pulp leading to a root canal. You've worn the back teeth down, and you've experienced the rocking of the teeth because you've had to visit a periodontist fro some looseness, and finally, you've actually broken off some teeth."
Equilibration - Treatment options may include doing a comprehensive occlusal analysis and possibly equilibration, where the doctor will carefully sculpt your teeth to make them fit more comfortably.
Splint - Full with Traces - The doctor may also recommend aligning your teeth with a splint or Invisalign.
After reviewing the issues with the BiteFX animations, the dental assistant now shows the pictures she took of the patient's teeth. Those pictures correlate to her discussion with the animations and will allow the patient to see first-hand the affects that their malocclusion has had on their own teeth. If the patient's condition is amenable to using Invisalign to re-position the teeth, she will discuss how Invisalign works at this stage of their discussion. This plants the seeds in the patient's mind in preparation for their more comprehensive consult with the doctor, who will reiterate much of what the dental assistant discussed but with more detail and with more animations.
Based on their results, this dental office is reporting a very high success rate in getting eligible patients to opt for the Invisalign treatment option to address their occlusal issues due to the patients' ability to comprehend their situation using BiteFX and the benefits of the Invisalign solution.

Tags: Using BiteFX

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