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Dental Charting

Who usually do the dental charting? The dentist or hygienist? And if it’s the hygienist, how can you tell the difference between a composite filling and inlays/onlays when charting?



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2 Answers

I chart all new pt appts. I also update cc interval pt that the DA didn’t do, which irritates me sometimes. I’ll update any referrals and correct codes etc… The doc also calls out the restorations on new pts, but I usually add it to the computer. Inlays/onlays if the occlusal hasn’t been adjusted so much that it looks like a composite visually should have lab created anatomy like a crown. Radiographs will show if it is bonded like a crown and will not look like a composite. Hope this helps.

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In my office, the doctor sees new adult patients before I see them for a cleaning. So the dental assistant does all of the initial charting. Like Hygenius stated so well, onlays and inlays look more like a crown (the edges are more symmetrical???). It’s hard to explain! The more you see them, the better you will get at differentiating the two. Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor if “He/she would like the restoration charted as a composite or an onlay/inlay?” while he/she is doing the exam. This makes it appear to the patient as you aren’t stumped, but still gives you a clear answer.

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