Use Converted Database

See Technical.

Getting to know the ins and outs of Open Dental takes some time. Open Dental is flexible and customizable, so there are many choices in how to use the software and which features to implement. Below are recommendations for how to begin using Open Dental after a data Conversion.

Note: The data that is converted depends on the prior software. See Data Converted by Software Vendor for a detailed list.


Use the Post-Conversion Checklist as guide for setting up a freshly converted Open Dental database.

Patient Information and Appointments

We recommend starting with patients who have an upcoming appointment.

Before the Scheduled Appointment

  1. Select the patient.
  2. In the Family Module:
    • Verify patient information.
    • Check insurance plan information.
    • Verify the recall type (Prophy vs Perio).
  3. In the Chart Module, chart existing treatment and enter medical information.
  4. In the Appointments Module, verify that the appointment exists and the correct treatment planned procedures are attached.

During the Appointment - Back Office

  1. Update existing treatment and patient information.
  2. Set the appointment complete. Attach any added procedures.
  3. Chart needed treatment, if any, and prioritize it in the Treatment Plan.
  4. If treatment is needed, enter a Planned Appointment for the next appointment. This appointment is used by the front office to help with scheduling.

During the Appointment - Front Office

  1. In the Appointments Module, schedule the patient's next appointment.
    • If no treatment is needed, click Make Recall to schedule a Recall appointment.
    • If treatment is needed, click Make Appointment, then select the planned appointment and copy it to pinboard to schedule it.
  2. Complete the patient's appointment.
  3. In the Account Module, enter patient payments and create insurance claims. Print statements and receipts as needed.

Daily Tasks

End of Day Reports

Other Useful Features

Manage Appointments

Open Dental has several tools to use to manage appointments and keep the schedule full, thus keeping production high. See Appointment Lists.