Dr. McGlennen: Tell me how you were introduced to OralDNA® salivary diagnostics.
Bianca Velayo DMD: As a Pacific Dental Services (PDS)-Supported Clinician, I am thankful to be part of an organization that embraces the Mouth-Body Connection®. PDS teamed up with OralDNA® Labs to offer testing to our patients and I first began incorporating it into my practice in 2018.
Dr. McGlennen: What are the top two things to consider when you select a patient for testing?
Bianca Velayo DMD: In my office, our clinical culture is to test every patient who is diagnosed with periodontal disease and where scaling and root planing is recommended. We also review our patient’s medical histories and will offer testing to patients who are pregnant, diabetic, have cardiovascular disease or any other common systemic diseases that are related to periodontal disease.
Dr. McGlennen: What are the biggest benefits to using salivary diagnostics?
Bianca Velayo DMD: One of the biggest benefits is how the test results have improved patient engagement and motivation. Most patients have a hard time understanding the clinical effects of their periodontal disease. However, thanks to salivary diagnostics, patients are now better able to learn and understand their condition because we’re able to specify which bacteria are living in their mouth, the quantity, as well as if the patient has a genetic risk for periodontal disease. Patients take their results seriously and want to know all the ways they can get their bacterial levels down. It’s very cool to see the patients want to partner with you and learn more!
Dr. McGlennen: What is your favorite part of the Alert2™ results? Why?
Bianca Velayo DMD: I love everything on the Systemic Effects page! I really appreciate all of the treatment considerations especially because it supports everything we do in my practice. It really gives myself and my patients the confidence that the treatments I am recommending are based on science and patients are more likely to accept their treatment plans because of it!
Dr. McGlennen: How do your patients respond to this technology? What is their #1 question?
Bianca Velayo DMD: Patients are very impressed that we have this technology available to them. They often ask why their previous dentist hasn’t recommended this to them before. It’s allowed me to distinguish myself as the provider of choice in our market!
Dr. McGlennen: What is your biggest challenge? How do you overcome that obstacle?
Bianca Velayo DMD: I think nowadays most everyone’s challenge is cost. I remind my patient that the fee we charge is mostly a lab fee and tie it back to something they may be more familiar with like getting blood work and paying their copay. After I emphasize the importance of the test and how we can utilize the results to help treat their disease then patients really get on board with it.
Dr. McGlennen: If a new OralDNA® provider were to ask you for advice, what would be your best tip?
Bianca Velayo DMD: Conduct the test on yourself, your family members, and your team members so that you can get comfortable with how to perform the test and review the results. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to OralDNA® labs for support. When I first started, I set up a Zoom call so that I could review some of my patient’s results. After that consultation, I felt prepared for my patient’s next appointment.
Dr. McGlennen: Where do you see salivary diagnostics in 3-5 years? 10 years? What would be the impact on your practice/ patients?
Bianca Velayo DMD: I can’t imagine practicing without this technology because it has made such a positive impact on the way I do dentistry and treat my patients. Utilizing the patient’s test results, we have been able to work with patient’s physicians to help patients get the correct medical diagnosis and treatments regarding issues like Rheumatoid Arthritis and overcoming adverse pregnancy outcomes.
I look forward to hopefully being able to create even more personalized treatment plans and enhanced homecare routines for patients based on their results as the technology continues to improve!