Maintaining oral health is essential to lead a healthy life, and regular dental check-ups are crucial. Dentists examine the mouth for signs of tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental problems during a dental visit. One of the procedures they may perform is dental code 4346, also known as scaling and root planing. While it may not be as commonly known as other dental codes, D4346 covers an essential aspect of preventive care that you should be aware of. This article will discuss what dental code 4346 is, its purpose, and the procedure involved.
The D4346 code was introduced in 2017 to fill a gap in the existing code system. Previously, the only code available for scaling and root planing (SRP) was D4341 and D4342. However, these codes were limited to patients with localized or generalized severe periodontitis, respectively. These codes did not capture generalized moderate or severe gingival inflammation cases, making it challenging for dental professionals to document and bill for these procedures. This gap in the code system necessitated the addition of the D4346 code to the CDT.
The addition of the D4346 code to the CDT code also helps standardize deep cleaning procedures. Before this code was added, different dental practices may have used different codes to report similar procedures, which made it difficult to compare and analyze data. The D4346 code provides a standardized way to report deep cleaning procedures, which makes it easier for dental professionals to communicate and compare data.
This code is used when a patient has moderate to severe gingival inflammation, which can lead to gum disease if left untreated.
D4346 is a therapeutic code used in dentistry, not preventative.
This code covers the scaling of all teeth in the mouth rather than a specific quadrant or section of teeth.
Patients who undergo D4346 may require additional follow-up care, such as more frequent dental cleanings or periodontal maintenance appointments, to maintain the health of their gums and prevent further inflammation.
There is not any age restriction. Even the child can use this code procedure. Also, a child who never got dental cleaning from dental professionals can use it.
Using D4346 allows for more accurate reporting of gingival inflammation, which can help dental professionals better assess the severity of the condition and develop appropriate treatment plans. The code ensures the procedure is accurately documented in the patient's dental records. This documentation is necessary for insurance claims and tracking the patient's progress in treating periodontal disease.
The use of code D4346 can help dentists detect and treat gingivitis in its early stages before it progresses to more severe periodontal disease.
Using the code can help dentists increase their revenue by billing insurance companies for the necessary treatment.
Treatment of gingivitis can lead to improved oral health, including healthier gums, fresher breath, and reduced risk of tooth loss.
To use the D4346 dental code, the dental professional must follow specific steps.
You cannot use D4346;
The risks of dental code 4346 are minimal. However, patients may experience discomfort or sensitivity during and after the procedure. There is also a small risk of infection, but this can be minimized by following good oral hygiene practices and taking any prescribed antibiotics as directed.
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