The dental record, also referred to as the patient's chart, is the official office document that records all of the treatment done and all patient-related communications that occur in the dental office. State and federal laws or regulations determine how it is handled, how long it is kept and who may have access to the information. This record provides for continuity of care for the patient.
If you should ever need to switch dentists, complete and accurate records contain enough information to allow your new dentist to treat you in a safe and effective manner. Today, many dentists are making use of computerized systems to maintain patient dental records. Electronic records have great quality and patient-safety benefits.
If you have a question about dental records, ask your dentist.