FOCUS ON: Teledentistry

Brant Herman, founder and CEO of Mouthwatch, LLC


Brant Herman, founder and CEO of Mouthwatch, LLC, discusses the benefits of teledentistry for doctors and patients. 


Q: During the pandemic, there was a spike in teledentistry adoption. How did teledentistry perform during this trial by fire? 

A: Although teledentistry has been around for 25 years, there was a tremendous spike in its adoption during the pandemic-related closure of dental offices. As dentists scrambled for ways to stay in touch with their patients and keep them out of hospital emergency rooms, the technology proved itself to be a highly effective and reliable communications and triage tool. Of course, the results varied based on the sophistication of the teledentistry platform used. Although a pandemic emergency was not the way we intended to introduce dentists and DSOs to the benefits of our TeleDent platform (MouthWatch), we could not have imagined a better proof of concept. 

Q: Post pandemic, are private practices and DSOs refocusing on the everyday benefits of teledentistry? 

A: Yes, because the “peacetime” benefits that teledentistry was initially designed for can be demonstrated every day. Many practice owners are now discovering that teledentistry can serve as the “Swiss Army knife” of dental workflows. It can enhance a broad range of practice operations, including patient introduction and triage, diagnosis, case presentations, referrals, homecare education, post-procedure monitoring, and more.   

Q: Are patients selecting dentists based on whether or not they offer teledentistry services? 

A: Today’s healthcare consumers want to be part of a healthcare ecosystem where most of their providers offer telehealth services. 

Part of the disparity between telemedicine and teledentistry is the fact that medical appointments are 90% diagnostic compared to dentistry, which is more hands-on and only 5% diagnostic. However, the adoption gap is closing as more dental providers incorporate diagnostic services such as salivary diagnostics and diabetes testing into their practices. More current and prospective patients, especially younger ones, expect a virtual encounter option from all of their healthcare providers. Moreover, according to a recent survey conducted by CareQuest Institute, 86% of patients were satisfied with their teledental experiences and would recommend teledentistry. 

Q: Is there a strong business case that can be made for teledentistry?

A: First, teledentistry is very affordable compared to other components of digital dentistry. In fact, the average teledentistry software license is generally less than the average monthly cable/internet package, which has been estimated to be $217.42 per month by, a website that compares cable rates. In contrast, the monthly fee for TeleDent software starts at $149.00 for 3 users. 

Teledentistry will also improve the patient dental experience, which, in turn, helps attract and retain patients and minimize no-shows. It must also be noted that the reduced cost for virtual visits and the ability to reserve chair time for billable treatment significantly boosts the bottom line. For example, Advantage Dental+, a DSO comprised of more than 70 locations, more than 200 providers, and more than 600 support employees throughout 5 states, reported to us that transitioning just 7% of their in-office appointments to virtual encounters with TeleDent reduced the DSO’s annual cost of treating patients by 70%. What’s more, the use of teledentistry in your practice is a billable and reimbursable CDT code when used correctly. 

Q: What is “value-based” oral care? How is MouthWatch bringing it to the forefront? 

A: Value-based care is designed to achieve better oral health and overall health outcomes at lower costs by emphasizing a minimally invasive and risk-based approach to ensure an equitable distribution of resources. Earlier this year, we launched a new MouthWatch subsidiary named Dentistry.One, which helps patients to get the care they need, when they need it, and provides the ability for organizations supporting patient health to drive improved outcomes, lower costs, and an enhanced patient experience. 

Dentistry.One includes a network of highly trained dentists to deliver the best dental telehealth experience possible, meeting patient needs such as emergencies, oral-systemic conditions, prescriptions, second opinions, cosmetic consultations, and overall preventive care. We also have an in-house team of Care Advisors—dental hygiene experts who will provide patients with a complete care experience, including coordination of in-person dental visits, benefits navigation to help patients better understand their insurance coverages, guidance for improving home care, and recommendations for oral healthcare products and services. 

Q: What is the future of teledentistry? 

A: Teledentistry stands ready to help dentists and physicians communicate with each other and share records in order to co-manage the health of their patients effectively—especially those with chronic systemic diseases. We predict that more medical providers, including hospital systems, will begin incorporating intraoral cameras as part of routine exams to help them obtain more complete patient histories and baseline documentation. Digital imaging, combined with teledentistry, can play a major role in reconnecting the mouth and the body within our healthcare system.   

Dentistry.One will serve as a digital pathway to bridge a patient’s oral health with their overall well-being. We will achieve this in the near future by integrating with leading electronic health record platforms so that when a patient is diagnosed with an oral-systemic disease or condition, Dentistry.One can simultaneously help the patient begin a better oral health and overall care journey.  


Mr. Herman is the founder and CEO of MouthWatch, LLC, and Dentistry One, LLC. He most recently led the development of Dentistry.One.

He can be reached at