Dental management decisions to purchase new technology like digital x-ray equipment can be difficult to make.
If older equipment still functions well and patients are happy, why replace it? The decision is tougher if you’re losing patients to competitors with high-tech dental offices.
We wanted to see how dentists are responding to the newest advancements in digital radiography. In the process, we uncovered some surprising results about why dentists like digital x-rays.
But first, we’ll give you the predictable results — 71% of the dentists who participated in our survey use digital x-rays, and 17% plan to convert.
“We have been using digital x-rays since 2003 and have been very happy with them. I feel that digital x-rays should be considered the standard of care in dental imaging by now!” Ohio prosthodontist
Only 12% said they’ll continue to use traditional film x-rays indefinitely, with no plans to change.
A Georgia dentist explained his reason simply as, “I don’t like digital x-rays.”
Even a few dentists who use digital x-rays gave them mixed reviews, mostly due to their high cost:
“Sensors and software do not cost that much to produce. What a mark up!!!!” California dentist
“Patients perceive us as current and up to date. The digital receptor , unlike other electrical pieces of electrical equipment has not come down in price since its inception. It would seem to me that there is collusion among the manufacturers and distributors to artificially keep prices up. This has probably deterred some practitioners from buying them.” California dentist
“Digital x-rays are more convenient and efficient . I like the speed and efficiency but I don’t believe that the diagnostic quality is any better. Also, with the cost of yearly support, computer upgrades, and insurance for the sensor I don’t think there is any cost savings.” Oregon dentist
We also asked the dentists who have already made the switch what they like most about digital radiography.
Lower long-term costs, better diagnostic images, and cleaner, faster processing were mentioned.
“It is so convenient to email x-rays to referrals and insurance companies (encrypted, of course).” Texas dentist
“It’s been 14 years now! Don’t miss film and processors at all!” Colorado dentist
“Clean and fast–no developing time and no chemicals!” Texas orthodontist
However, the factors that topped the popularity list are a surprise.
What do dentists like most about digital x-rays?
- They’re eco-friendly (create less toxic waste).
- They’re healthier for patients and staff.
Those are also two effective patient-focused talking-points to use in your dental marketing campaigns!