Don't miss a digital issue! Renew/subscribe for FREE today.
May 2023
Volume 44, Issue 5

Ready for AI?

By now we've all heard how artificial intelligence (AI) is going to change-or, shall I say, is changing-the world. AI has been knocking on the door for quite some time-decades, actually-and it now seems poised to push its way through the doorway. AI innovations, from chatbots to art generators to writing tools, are coming so quickly that it is difficult to keep track of it all.

As for dentistry, the future of AI appears to be bright. Anticipated benefits and efficiencies from AI in the dental profession range from aiding in radiograph analysis, improving diagnostic capabilities, enabling earlier findings, lowering costs, and simply helping dental practices better organize their day. When combined with advances in dental protocols and materials, AI will help create less-invasive, highly customized treatments and, ultimately, more predictable outcomes for patients-at least this is the hope.

In this issue of Compendium, our first continuing education (CE) article provides a brief overview of artificial intelligence and its future impact on dentistry. The author discusses differences between "general" AI-the scary AI that we see in the movies-and "narrow" AI, which laser-focuses on a specific task and is the type of AI that is impacting the dental and medical professions. The article points out how dentistry, which mainly concentrates on a single area of the body, namely the mouth, offers a favorable setting for AI.

A recent development involving AI is its ability to detect when doctors may be prescribing the wrong drug. In our other CE article, although the authors do not discuss AI, they do examine analgesic use for pregnant and/or breastfeeding patients. There are numerous factors oral healthcare providers must consider about pain medications when treating these patients, especially in light of the recent opioid epidemic and the publication of newer guidelines.

I also encourage readers to review the rest of this issue, including our report on the use of technology for providing a full-arch, screw-retained, implant-supported provisional restoration in one day using a fully digital restorative protocol.

Artificial intelligence in dentistry is nothing to be afraid of. Driven by data-the data that we as clinicians generate-it should only serve to further raise the standard of care.


Markus B. Blatz, DMD, PhD

© 2023 BroadcastMed LLC | Privacy Policy