Insurance

Tips & Tricks #37

We love sharing Open Dental use tips with you! In this Tips & Tricks post, we will be answering these questions:

Do I need to reset insurance benefits for my patients for the new year?

Nope! These reset automatically based on the plan year. The default is a calendar year. If you have patients whose benefits don’t reset with the calendar year, in the Edit Benefits window, simply uncheck calendar year and enter the month their benefits reset instead.

I’m new to Open Dental – where can I find help?

When you get started with Open Dental, you have a support contract, and with that comes many benefits. As a new practice, these are some of your best resources:

  • Use the ? in the upper right corner of windows in Open Dental! It will take you to the manual page on that topic. If you need a bit more help, read on!
  • Open Dental Support: Online chat, email, or call our team with up to two issues per call, and reach out as many times as needed as you ramp up. We are here for you, and we want to help set you up for Open Dental Success!
  • Training
    • We have LOADS of free videos on a wide range of topics on our YouTube Channel. Subscribe and turn on notifications to stay up-to-date on our videos.
    • Get connected with your very own Open Dental Trainer for some online training. It’s a cost-effective way to get training on exactly what you need!
  • Get connected to the Open Dental Users Facebook Group. With over 5,600 helpful, active members who work in dentistry every day, you can get real-world tips and learn about the Open Dental features they love.

I have a new employee. What’s the best way to set them up in Open Dental?

Employees can either be dental staff or providers (dentists) and each will need a slightly different setup. Your office is also likely using User Groups to manage different sets of permissions needed for the set of responsibilities the new employee will have. Since a User can be assigned to multiple User Groups, you can “stack” sets of permissions to give the employee a customized set of permissions based on their role(s).

new hire checklist Check out this New Hire Checklist to get your new addition on the road to success!

OK – what about the reverse situation when an employee leaves? Here are some best practices to prevent inadvertent changes to historical data.

I found some duplicate patients – how can I merge their records?

No problem! First things first, you need to figure out which patient has the most up-to-date info – this will be the one you want to merge information INTO. Then go to Tools, Misc Tools, Merge Patients. Choose the patient you would like to merge into (i.e., keep) at the top and the patient you’d like to merge from at the bottom, then click Merge. See our manual for all information that will be merged. It’s important to note that a merge cannot be undone, so make sure patients are duplicates before running the tool.

Does Open Dental have a “Day Sheet”? What reports should I run at the end of each day?

You will want to run these two reports:

The Daily Payments Report

The Production & Income Report

How do I search for procedure codes?

If you’re charting a procedure code you don’t have a procedure button for, you’ll need to search for it. From the chart, click Procedure List to search. On the left, you have three search bars. These search bars will search specific fields, so make sure you type your keyword into the correct field.

For example, the abbreviation for “retreatment of previous root canal therapy – anterior” (D3346) is “RCT-RAnt”. If you searched “RCT-RAnt” in the By Descript bar, you would not get results since that phrase is in the Abbreviation. Instead, search for that phrase in the By Abbrev bar.

If you’re having trouble finding a specific code, try changing your keyword. The description search will search all words, so you don’t need to type in the full procedure description. For example, if you’re looking for an occlusal guard, but forgot how to spell occlusal or just remember “night guard”, try just searching “guard”.

In addition to search terms, you can also filter your results by category.


Our support team is here to help you maximize the tools in Open Dental and work smarter, not harder. Just reach out anytime you need help, we’re here for you!

A penny for your thoughts...

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.