Top 15 Mobile Applications for Dental & Oral Health

LaQuia A. Walker, DDS, MPH; Corey Stein Contributor Information

November 15, 2012


Choosing the Best Apps for Dental/Oral Health

In this slideshow, you will see a variety of mobile apps that may increase efficiency and productivity. Rather than an exhaustive list of every available app, these are our personal choices for those apps we find the most useful for dentists and oral health professionals. You may have other favorites. Many of the featured apps are free, all are supported by iOS, and some are supported by Android and Blackberry as well. We included apps for patient education, patient forms, data management, patient communication, clinical reference, practice management, imaging, and more. A few apps require additional software for a computer, so check with your IT colleagues if you intend to install these on a nonpersonal device.

Slide 1.

dCStory: Patient Education

Patient education tools are crucial in any practice in order to relay complex clinical information to patients in a clear yet descriptive manner. Many dentists are familiar with CAESY dental patient education software, and dCStory is a great alternative to provide educational counseling and treatment plan options. Using high-quality 3D images, patients can be guided through complex procedures with over 200 viewable animations. Other features permit the ability to view x-rays or photos. dCStory also allows dentists to write or draw out additional information directly on the image itself (with suggested use of a stylus). Information can then be printed or emailed to the patient for their own at-home review.

Slide 2.

DDS GP (Dental Demo Suite General Practice): Patient Education

Dental Demo Suite GP is the most comprehensive chairside mobile application available for patient education. The application provides thorough explanations of hundreds of dental conditions and treatments. Stock images are provided for use, or your own patient images can be uploaded into a library. Each type of image can be drawn on to illustrate specific points during a case discussion. DDS GP is currently available on iOS, Android, and Blackberry devices.

Slide 3.

Canvas, Note Taker HD, GoodNotes, Penultimate: Patient Forms/Clinical Note Taking

Both patient history forms and clinical notes can be entered using mobile applications and saved on synced office desktop or laptop computers. Canvas is a company that provides a service of converting customized paper-based forms into electronic formats for mobile application use. Predesigned dental history forms are available as an app and Canvas also offers bar-code scanning data entry. Other applications, such as Note Taker HD, GoodNotes, and Penultimate, allow free-hand notes to be taken directly on a tablet and saved as a digital file. These apps also allow PDF files (such as patient history forms or even tooth charting) to be uploaded and annotated for patients or providers to record standardized documentation.

Slide 4.

Box: Data Access & Management

Box is an online, cloud-based service that allows users to securely create and share files or folders using any computer or mobile device. This allows a practice to back-up and manage their electronic documents and consolidate them into a single online platform. Using Box, electronic documents, such as patient history forms or procedure consent forms, can be saved at the point of completion (perhaps in the waiting room or operatory), exchanged through secure online file sharing, and accessed at the front desk or another location. This may also be useful for dentists or staff who prefer to work on managerial business at home yet need the information at the office. Due to its data-encryption capabilities and its ability to handle various file types (.pdf, .docx, .xls), businesses of all sizes are using Box to manage their electronic documents.

Slide 5.

LogMeIn: Data Access & Management

Dentists and staff may require out-of-office access to the dental office’s computer database. Using an easy-to-use system with a no-hassle set up, LogMeIn provides the solution to remote desktop access. When logging into the office computer is needed, practice personnel can use this to check a schedule or update patient appointments while away from the office. When out-of-office emergency notifications are received, LogMeIn can be used to access information in the patient record to gain patient familiarity.

Slide 6.

MyDentist by DentalAnywhere: Patient Communication

Whether in the office or during nonoffice hours, patients require accessibility to dental support. When emergencies happen, the dentist needs more information than what a voicemail message can relay. MyDentist, a product of DentalAnywhere, provides a solution to facilitate remote patient-provider communication needs. Using text, pictures, and diagrams, patients can use the app to report emergencies directly to the dentist as well as receive brief emergency instructions. The application can also be used by the patient to request appointments, contact the office, or refer the dentist to a friend.

Slide 7.

Dental Spanish Guide: Patient Communication

The Dental Spanish Guide, by Mavro Inc, provides a simple and easy-to-follow guide to communicate with Spanish-speaking patients when no translator is available. Available phrases allow dentists and hygienists to make an initial assessment with Spanish-speaking patients. The free application even has the functionality to use digital flashcards to allow the clinician to practice Spanish dental phrases.

Slide 8.

Medscape Mobile: Clinical Reference

Medscape Mobile is the most comprehensive app available for healthcare professionals. From drugs to conditions: Everything is here, and the app is free. The application is available for the iOS and Android operating systems as well as BlackBerry. Medscape Mobile is a great tool to use for patient care to look up drug interactions, check dosing, access medical calculators, and more. The app also keeps you current on the latest in medical and dental news as well as providing an easy platform for obtaining continuing education.

Slide 9.

Epocrates: Clinical Reference

Epocrates is one of the oldest and most comprehensive drug references available as a mobile application. While providing references and calculators for both adult and pediatric dosing, it also permits the ability to check for drug interactions and visual identification of medications. The application is available for iPhone and Android, and various versions range from $200 to free. It is worth noting that Epocrates has a variety of medical tools and atlases available for download.

Slide 10.

GC Restorative Dentistry Guides: Clinical Technique Reference & Patient Education

GC Restorative Dentistry Guide, while focusing on its own products, provides well-illustrated animations to walk through each step of various restorative procedures. Whether used as a technique reference or as a patient education tool, this free application may be quite useful in your office.

Slide 11.

iRomexis: Imaging

iRomexis provides image viewing for 2D and 3D images acquired from Planmeca x-ray units. The app provides a simple method to share images with colleagues or to discuss with patients. Dentists can view, zoom, and directly measure the images saved on their network. Other dental imaging companies, such as Kodak, provide mobile applications that integrate with their equipment for access to digital images. Others, such as Eye-Fi, have created WiFi SD memory cards that can be used to wirelessly upload DSLR images directly onto your mobile tablet for documentation and patient education.

Slide 12.

Dental RX: Practice Management

Dental RX is a free application that allows dentists to electronically fill out a universal dental lab prescription and deliver it to the lab of their choice (via email). To perfect the aesthetic that dentists are seeking, photos can be taken (using the application itself) to capture the preferred shade and fit of each unit. The case entry form is designed to include all aspects of a dental lab prescription that many dentists may easily forget to include: occlusal plane, dentin color, or final shade. Dental RX can maximize dental lab results by minimizing order errors.

Slide 13.

Dental Product Shopper: Practice Management

Dental Product Shopper (DPS) is one of the best dentist-focused magazines available in digital form. Everything you need to know about new dental equipment is provided here in one easy-to-navigate app. As a practice management resource, DPS includes peer-to-peer evaluations of products, articles about clinical practice and techniques, as well as highlights about the newest products on the dental market.

Slide 14.

Journal of Cosmetic Dentistry: Clinical Journal

The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry's Journal of Cosmetic Dentistry is one of the few peer-reviewed journals available as an app. It offers print content in a robust digital format and provides information on comprehensive treatment on aesthetic dentistry and new technology. We expect more dental journals will follow and provide digital mobile delivery of their content.

Slide 15.

ADA, ADEA, MCOHS, AAE, AAPD: Annual Sessions

Organized dentistry has embraced the mobile app through the deployment of annual session applications for yearly meetings. Several organizations, such as the ADA, NDA, AAPD, ADEA, and AAE all offered attendees an app for their 2012 meetings. The mobile conference app allows participants to build a personal itinerary, review speaker biographies, and take session notes. These apps also provide easy-to-use exhibitor information and maps of convention facilities.

Slide 16.


Disclosure: LaQuia A. Walker, DDS, MPH, has disclosed the following relevant financial relationships: Served as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant, or trustee for: ICE Health Systems

Received research grant from: Canica Design

Disclosure: Corey Stein has disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

Slide 17.

Contributor Information


LaQuia A. Walker, DDS, MPH, Assistant Professor, Pediatric Dentistry, Indiana University School of Dentistry; Staff Dentist, Pediatric Dentistry, Riley Hospital for Children, Indianapolis, Indiana

Disclosure: LaQuia A. Walker, DDS, MPH, has disclosed the following relevant financial relationships: Served as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant, or trustee for: ICE Health Systems

Received research grant from: Canica Design

Corey Stein, Graduate Student, Research Trainee, Center for Dental Informatics, University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Disclosure: Corey Stein has disclosed no relevant financial relationships.