Clinical collaborations between surgical specialists and general practitioners (GPs)/prosthodontists continue to be an essential aspect of successfully offering dental implant services. This synergy is particularly effective when it comes to serving more patients with full-arch implant dentistry.
In this article, we explore three key reasons why oral surgeons and periodontists experience an uptick in full-arch implant cases once more of their referring restorative doctors are clinically trained to restore full-arch implant prostheses.
Note: For the purposes of efficiency, in this article we will group GPs and prosthodontists under the restorative term of “GP.”
1. Trained GPs become far more comfortable performing full-arch implant cases
The realm of full-arch dental implants can be complex and therefore requires a deep understanding of all things restorative. GPs unfamiliar with the full-arch restorative process will feel hesitant or uncomfortable when dealing with complex implant cases. Put differently, they do not refer patients for full-arch consultations.
However, through clinical training and hands-on experiences in restoring full-arch cases, GPs enhance their skills and comfort levels. With improved clinical familiarity, more intelligent doctor-patient conversations can occur.
“I’ve always believed that solid CE is foundational to introducing new procedures into dental practices,” said all-on-x expert Dr. Michael Drone, prosthodontist of Valparaiso, Indiana.
“I’ve lectured at TeethXpress full-arch courses in addition to attending them with my oral surgeon — twice. When it comes to all-on-x training, what I’ve found to be unique about the TeethXpress courses is that the organizers encourage surgical specialists to attend with their restorative referrals.”
Clinical training equips GPs with the knowledge and expertise necessary to plan, design and execute the restorative phase of full-arch implant cases. No practitioner wants to appear to a patient as though they are advocating a procedure by which they aren’t completely confident they can perform.
Well-trained GPs learn to communicate more fluently with their surgical counterparts to ensure a seamless transition from implant placement to final restoration. As a result, GPs become more self-assured and capable of managing these complex cases.
2. Trained GPs recognize more patients in need of full-arch implant therapy
When GPs can learn through advanced all-on-x lectures and ample hands-on didactics, a funny thing happens. Almost instantly, they become acutely aware of the functional and esthetic limitations of traditional dentures and other dated prosthetics.
Frequently these cases have been in the GP’s practice for many years. In many cases only patchwork dentistry is offered. For example, an abutment tooth fractures at the root and the partial denture is repaired or replaced with another partial denture and no mention of an implant solution.
But with training, the heightened awareness by GPs allows for recognition of patients who may be ideal candidates for full-arch dental implant treatment as a more comprehensive solution.
Given that GPs are often the first point of contact for patients seeking dental care, this newfound knowledge and skillset allows them to better educate and inform patients about the advantages of dental implant solutions.
This proactive approach not only enhances patient outcomes but also strengthens the need to collaborate with a surgical specialist in helping more patients with full-arch implant therapy.
3. Trained GPs refer more cases for surgical consultations
As GPs become more comfortable and proficient in restoring full-arch dental implant cases, they also develop a better understanding of when surgical intervention is necessary. This insight is invaluable for oral surgeons and periodontists who count on GPs to make well-informed referrals.
By referring patients with precise treatment plans in mind, GPs help streamline the treatment process. This leads to a more efficient and coordinated approach to full-arch dental implant cases, ultimately benefiting the patient and ensuring the best possible outcomes.
Furthermore, it lightens the load on surgical specialists, allowing them to allocate their time and expertise to more intricate cases that truly require their specialized skills. Without question, it behooves any OMS or periodontist to have their referrals trained on full-arch dental implant restorations.
“In nearly 10 years of offering TeethXpress full-arch implant courses, we can say with confidence that surgical specialists who attend these courses with two to four of their top [single-unit] implant referring GPs benefit the most,” said Lana Shoultz, senior director, Practice Development for BioHorizons. “These surgical specialists experience an immediate stream of new full-arch implant surgical consultations. For this reason, several surgeons have attended TeethXpress courses multiple times with different sets of GPs.”
When GPs are clinically trained in the restoration of full-arch dental implants, it yields a multitude of benefits for GPs, surgical specialists and ultimately, the patient. GPs become more confident in their ability to restore full-arch implant cases.
This confidence almost always leads to a GP’s ability to identify prospective patients and, in turn, refer more patients for full-arch surgical consultations. This collaboration between surgical specialists and GPs enhances patient care, streamlines the treatment process and results in improved patient outcomes.
Through this synergy, the world of dental implantology advances and brings the best possible care to those in need. TeethXpress full-arch, immediate-load courses have proven to be an excellent resource to train GPs in full-arch implant restorations. Register for a TeethXpress immediate-load course today and grow your dental implant business.