Dental Hygiene Exam Codes to Know
Dental hygiene exam codes are part of our daily lives in dentistry. To clarify, we consider two codes in this article. The periodic oral exam code. And also the comprehensive periodontal exam code.
So, let’s first define which ADA codes to use for each. First, for the periodic exam. That code is D0120. Alternatively the comprehensive periodontal exam is D0180.
Which Code Do We Use?
Periodic Oral Exam
The periodic oral exam is a code for established patient care. And the most frequent code chosen by the dentist or hygienist for all hygiene exams. If this is your “go to” code for every hygiene exam, let’s reconsider.
Perhaps use this code for healthy patients and children at each hygiene exam. Most importantly, decide on a time increment for the dentist to perform this exam. And the fee coincides with the dentist’s time.
Comprehensive Periodontal Exam
However, the comprehensive periodontal exam is for new or existing patients. We have options to consider with this code. Above all, keep in mind that this code is for periodontal patients.
Perhaps alternate with the periodic exam for existing periodontal patients. Similarly to the periodic exam, decide on a time increment for the dentist. And charge a fee that aligns with the dentist’s time with this code.
Block Scheduling Considerations
Add additional time to periodontal maintenance appointments with exams. Especially for those with the comprehensive periodontal exam.
Our periodontal patients require more time of the hygienist and the dentist. Our fees reflect that. So, provide the dentist and hygienist with the time they need for each appointment.
If there is a tightening or squeezing feeling in hygiene, it’s most likely time to adjust that template! Give the clinical team the time they need to care for patients and breathe!
Remember, our patients feel what we feel too. Why do patients dislike going to the dentist anyway? It might just be the energy and pressure we breathe into our work space. Readjust, realign, and make space for the care your patients deserve.
Dental Insurance Considerations
Many dental patients are insurance driven. They want to know what their insurance benefits allow. And sometimes only want to do what those benefits allow. It’s up to us to help them see the problem with this way of thinking.
Come into agreement with the patient. Agree to help them understand their benefits. And let them know you care about their benefits. Because it is important to them.
However, we do well to introduce our patients to a higher level of care. Because that’s why we are here for them. To help them raise their awareness and improve their health. Let’s step up to the task and improve our communication and case acceptance together!