Charting Special Conditions

Learn how to record special dental conditions, such as diastemas and missing or unerupted teeth.

Every patient is unique. Making sure a patient’s tooth chart accurately represents his or her uniqueness is important when you are transitioning from that paper document to the digital document. Patients have diastemas, missing teeth, unerupted teeth, retained primary teeth, and lots of other situations that you want to document on the tooth chart. How do you keep it all straight and chart it as accurately and quickly as possible?

Using the Dentrix conditions is a way that you can chart all those unique features that you find and want to note. You can customize the conditions with different paint types, edit the description, and add them to your quick buttons for faster charting. In this article, I’ll go through a few of the common conditions and show you what it might look like on the Dentrix Patient Chart.

  • Diastema–The condition for a diastema is called “15112 Mesial Open Contact” or “15113 Distal Open Contact” in the Dentrix Patient Chart. If you want to edit the description, in the Office Manager, from the Maintenance menu, point to Practice Setup, and then click Procedure Code Setup. Under Procedure Code Category, select Conditions, select 15112 Mesial Open Contact (or the condition you want to change), and then click Edit. Then you can edit the description to read “Diastema” if you want.
  • Missing tooth, closed space–If you have a patient who had a four-bi extraction as a child and the orthodontist closed the space, you can use the “15000 Mesial Drifting” condition (Figure 2) to show that the space has been closed. This could also be used if a patient lost a tooth and the teeth have moved into the open spot.
  • Unerupted tooth–If your patient has a third molar or another tooth that has not fully erupted yet, you can use the condition “15114 Unerupted tooth.” I have seen offices either use the U on the tooth to mark it or circle the tooth. You can choose what works best for you. If you want to change how it paints on the tooth chart, in the Office Manager, from the Maintenance menu, point to Practice Setup, and then click Procedure Code Setup. Under Procedure Code Category, select Conditions, select 15114 Unerupted Tooth, and then click Edit. Make the desired changes. Make sure you use the Paint Type option to specify the appearance.
  • Retained Primary Tooth–If you have a patient with a retained primary tooth, then you would highlight the tooth, and from the Options menu point to Primary/ Permanent, and then click Change Selected to just change that one tooth.

Having an accurate picture of your patient’s dentition helps with the visual aspect and makes the perio chart more accurate. Now that many offices are using the digital record instead of paper, it is important that you treat the digital chart with as much detail as the paper chart.

Learn More

To learn more about charting conditions, see the “Charting conditions” topic in the Dentrix Help.

For more information about improving clinical efficiency with Dentrix, visit

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By Dayna Johnson, Certified Dentrix Trainer

Dayna Johnson, founder and principal consultant of Rae Dental Management, helps dental offices improve patient care, increase collections, and reduce staff headaches by implementing efficient management systems. With 23 years of experience in the business and technical side of dental offices, Dayna’s passion for efficient systems is grounded in both personal understanding and professional expertise. Dayna can be reached at or visit her website at

Originally published in Dentrix Magazine, 2017