Written by Dentistry Today Wednesday, 20 March 2013 10:57
In the past, almost everyone developed tooth decay, and as people aged, tooth loss from decay and gum disease was routine. Today, thanks to scientific advances and preventive therapies like community water fluoridation, fluoride toothpaste and dental sealants, there has been dramatic and continuing improvement in the oral health of Americans. Many people still suffer from oral disease problems, however, and risk for oral disease varies among all people. The good news is that if you know your specific risk factors for tooth decay, gum disease and oral cancer, you can take simple preventive action to avoid these problems.
Consumers who visit DeltaDental.com or any Delta Dental member company website can easily access the quick, user-friendly survey that asks a series of questions about personal habits, past history of dental disease and treatment, and current symptoms of oral disease to assess an individual's risk level for tooth decay, gum disease and oral cancer. After consumers take the risk assessment survey, they receive a risk score for each problem area. They can bring this report to their dentist to verify their risk and develop strategies to lower their risk for oral disease and improve their oral health. No personal health information (PHI) is ever revealed, and the survey can be taken anonymously. Delta Dental websites also provide relevant oral health information.
The myDentalScore tool is a practical oral health and wellness risk assessment tool. A recent study conducted by a consumer products company found that nearly every patient who took this survey and received guidance based on their risk level said they had acted upon on its recommendations.
"Risk assessment is an important first step for people who want to educate themselves on the state of their oral health," said Dr. Bill Kohn, vice president of dental science and policy for Delta Dental. "This partnership with PreViser will allow consumers to learn more about their risk for oral diseases, get valuable oral health information and help them work with their dentist on strategies for a lifetime of good oral health."
PreViser will concurrently launch the first fully functional oral disease wellness and disease management technology platform. In addition to the consumer myDentalScore tool, the platform includes a cloud version of the company's popular clinical oral disease assessment software (the Oral Health Information Suite, or OHIS), developed for the dentist, and a data integration hub (the Prevention Management Console or PMC) that can aggregate the oral health scoring generate by consumers with clinical assessments performed by dentists, as well as with the actual dental insurance claims experience. This suite of products can help identify the most effective wellness strategies for both specific individual patient interventions, and for employee wellness programs.
"Our objective in the development of this technology," PreViser CEO Carl Loeb said, "is to help significantly improve the oral health of patients by providing actionable information on oral care needs for patients, dentists and insurers."
About Delta Dental Plans Association
The not-for-profit Delta Dental Plans Association (www.deltadental.com,) based in Oak Brook, Ill., is the leading national network of independent dental service corporations. It provides dental benefits programs to more than 60 million Americans in more than 95,000 employee groups throughout the country. For more oral health news and information from Dr. Kohn and DDPA, subscribe to our blog and follow us on Twitter.
About PreViser Corporation
PreViser Corporation (www.previser.com), located in Mount Vernon, Wash., is a world leader in risk and disease analytic software designed to enhance treatment planning for patients affected by oral disease.