Feature Highlight

Feature Highlight: Chart Module Show Tab

The Chart Module has many different functions, and some may get overlooked as we’re focusing on charting procedures, adding patient medications and allergies, and making notes about work as it gets completed. An often overlooked but powerful feature is the Show tab and Chart Views. This post will dive into all of the different functions of the Show tab and how to make Chart Views work for you.

From the Chart Module, click the Show tab to see the available options.

Before we discuss how to set up Chart Views, let’s talk about the different functions within the Show tab. These can be changed at any time, and do not have to be tied to a specific Chart View.


Use the Procedures section to only show procedures in the Progress Notes and on the Graphical Tooth Chart that have a certain status. You can choose one, multiple, or all. The options are:

  • Treat Plan: Procedures with a TP status.
  • Completed: Procedures with a C status.
  • Existing: Procedures with an EO or EC status.
  • Referred: Procedures with an R status.
  • Conditions: Procedures with a Cn status.

Proc Notes

Typically, this is one that you would want to keep checked, regardless of what other changes you make to the view.

  • Checked: Displays all notes associated with different object types.
  • Unchecked: Does not display any procedure notes, commlog details, the body of emails sent, or appointment details.

Selected Teeth

This may be the most helpful option in the Show Tab, and the one most often missed. Checking this box will only show you work completed on teeth that are selected in the graphical tooth chart. For example, select tooth #3 from the tooth chart, and then click selected teeth. The progress notes section will only show you procedures for that tooth, including all procedure statuses. Narrow it down further as needed by unchecking any statuses you do not want to see. By default, clicking the selected teeth option will also check the “proc notes” box to display all procedure notes associated with that tooth.

This feature is helpful when the doctor asks “when was that crown placed on tooth #3?” Rather than having to scroll back in the history, you can easily remove everything else to quickly find what you’re looking for.

Tech Tip:  Make sure you uncheck the selected teeth box when you are done to go back to your normal view. This has been known to cause brief moments of panic thinking that a patient’s chart has completely disappeared. When in doubt, look for the red text indicating a Custom View is being displayed.

All, None, and Date Filter

Click All to quickly select all show options, and None to do the opposite. Utilize the dates filter […] to show progress notes for a specific date range, to avoid having to print the patient’s entire history of progress notes. Quick options include today, yesterday, this year, and last year. You also have the ability to input any custom date range as well. This is helpful when another practice requests records for work they referred to your practice.


Utilize the search function to locate specific words in clinical notes and appointment notes, or narrow the progress notes by procedure (i.e. type crown to see all crowns for this patient or the word pain to see all the times a patient presented with pain.)

Object Types

In addition to procedures, this allows you to show or not show other objects.

  • Appointments: Check to show appointments for the patient.
  • Commlog: Check to show commlogs for the patient.
    • Family: Check to also show commlogs for family members.
    • Super Family: Check to also show commlogs for Super Family members. Only shows if Super Family is enabled in Show Features.
  • Tasks: Check to show tasks attached to the patient, any family members, or to an appointment.
  • Emails: Check to show emails sent to the patient.
  • Lab Cases: Check to show lab cases.
  • Rx: Check to show paper or electronic prescriptions.
  • Sheets: Check to show filled patient forms.

Other Options

Show Auto Commlogs: Show commlog entries that have been automatically generated (e.g. Recalls, FHIR, Web Sched, etc). This checkbox is user-specific and affects automated commlogs in the Account Module, Chart Module, and Appointment Edit window.

Audit: Audit mode is useful for seeing deleted procedures (that may have been deleted accidentally) and deleted sheets. It’s also useful when checking a patient’s chart for accuracy, and not wanting to accidentally make changes to notes. Unfortunately deleted procedures and their notes cannot be restored. We suggest taking a screenshot (using the Snipping Tool in Windows is great!) and then recreating the procedure and the note if needed.

Deleted sheets can, however, be restored. Do this by double-clicking into the sheet and clicking Restore.

Is TP View: Checking this box will add a new checkbox to the Enter Treatment tab.  This checkbox will allow you to see and create Treatment Plans directly from the Chart Module, without having to switch to the Treatment Plan module.

Chart Views

Similar to Appointment Views, Chart Views can be set up to quickly view information that you commonly search for. This will save you time, while still giving you the flexibility to change the options as needed. These are tied to F keys on your keyboard to quickly switch between views as needed.

Open Dental comes already set up with a Default Chart View. We recommend that you customize this to fit your practice needs, adding additional views. First, let’s take a look at how to set up a new view, and then some suggested views that may be helpful to your practice.

Adding a Chart View

Once you have all of the procedure statuses and object types you want to show you in your chart view checked, click the Add button. Alternatively, double-click an existing view to make changes.

The procedures and object types you had selected prior to clicking Add, will be selected in the Chart View Edit screen. Make changes as needed.

Give your Chart View a description (e.g. Treatment Plan). Customize the “dates showing” as needed. The default is all dates.

In the Fields Showing section at the bottom, you can add further customization to your view by adding or removing certain fields that show in the Progress Notes. See our Show Chart Views web manual page for more details on each field.

Once you’ve made all your changes, click OK to save. You will see your new view added to the Chart Views section with an F key assigned. Use the up and down arrows to rearrange your views, as needed. The default view that will open when Open Dental is launched is whatever appears at the top of the list (F1).

Suggested Chart Views

Treatment Planned Procedures: Check only Treat Plan in Procedures, Proc Notes, and no other object types. Check Is TP view.
Completed Procedures: Check only Completed in Procedures, Proc Notes, and no other object types.
Commlogs: Check no Procedure statuses, Proc Notes, and the Commlog object type. Optionally, check the Family and Super Family commlog boxes.
Prescriptions: Check Rx in Object Types, Proc Notes, and no Procedure statuses.

Customize these as needed to fit your practice flow, and your role in the office. There is no limit to how many views can be created, however, only the first 12 will be associated with F keys.

As always, if you have questions about any of our features or how to best use them in your practice, contact us!

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