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​Hail Dental

School Project (Team of 3) | 3 Months | 2019

An app that connects with sensor-enabled toothbrushes and deliver timely feedback that motivates, engages, and empowers patients in their daily oral care routine

​Our Team

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Jingwen Li


​Jessica Cheng


Natalie Guisinger

My Role:

Concept Generation, Design Research, User Testing, Interface Design

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Design Statement:

“ We aim to create a mobile health application that promotes healthy dental routines to college students and allows for easy communication regarding pain between patients and dentists.

Research Methods:


Google Survey for 50+ Students

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Interview with Students on Campus

(15 mins each, 10F, 2M)

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Interview with 3 U of M Clinicians


Dr. McComas

Clinical Assistant Professor of Dental Hygiene 

​Dr. Nalliah

Clinical Professor

Dr. Stefanac  

Senior Associate Dean for School of Dentistry

"Patients usually have a hard time answering when was the last time...question and they have a hard time describing the pain and location. "  __ Dr. Nalliah

“We tried to send out surveys after treatment, but the response rate is only 20%, and we have a hard time receiving patient’s feedback and follow up after the appointment.” __ Dr. Stefanac

1) Issues with communication between dentist and patient:

  • Pain and symptom explanation

    • International Student’s language barrier

Findings With Clinicians

2) Student’s dental behavior

  • Diet

  • Daily dental routine/quality

  • Good to digitally notify students once in a while (instead of spamming them with dental information)

3) Costs of M-Dentistry

  • Faculty (same price of private practice)

  • Residency/grad students (35% off)

  • Predoctoral students (50% off)

4) Patient Privacy


  • Patients can say/input data/information to their dentists (but M-Dentistry cannot give that information out)

4) Modes of Communication between dentist to the patient 

  • Scratch pads (with blank diagrams of sets of teeth)

  • Verbal conversations

  • Booklets of diagrams


Observe Students' Daily Oral Care Routines

Findings With Students

1) Lack of oral health knowledge & hard to maintain healthy habit

 "I don't really brush my teeth for at least 2 mins every time, and I don't know that we have to floss daily in order to maintain healthy oral health routine." __ Joyce

2) Development of healthy dental behaviors in college

“I think I'm a much better tooth brusher. I use mouthwash now and floss better" __ Margaret

Research Findings:
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Trouble with describing pain/symptoms

“When they ask about pain scale, don’t know what 1 is or what 10 is. Also I always have trouble answering ”when was the last time...” questions.


- Joyce

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Hard to keep a long term good dental behavior especially after procedures

“I always remind myself to keep good dental behavior every time after a dental visit. But I have a hard time continuing to do so. ”


- Rachel


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Forgetting healthy dental behaviors in college

“My dentist asks me if I floss and how often and it’s generally every other week”



- Margaret

Stakeholder Pain Points Analysis:

​Check - Up Clinic Website

Website to make appointments and ask questions to M-Dental School


  • Poorly designed

  • Not user friendly

  • Not enough functions

  • Doesn’t give much information about clinic

​M - Dental

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  • Over half of the students slacked in good dental behavior because they were busy

  • When at an examination: difficulty describing symptoms

  • Difficulty understanding dental issue and treatment

  • Only have a vague idea of procedures, don’t understand fully


Senior Associate Dean for Patient Services

Clinical Assistant Professor of Dentistry

Clinical Professor of Dentistry


  • Difficulty communicating with patients at times (especially when describing pain)

  • Want to see more students using school services

Interviewed undergraduate students at the University of Michigan

​Problems & Potential Design Solutions



  • Patient has difficulty describing their symptoms to the doctor

  • Patient has difficulty describing their pain history

  • Many people do not have a high quality brushing behavior

  • Patient has a hard time understanding the dental problem

  • Many people don't know how their diet affects their oral health

  • Teeth diagram to show the location of the pain and the doctor can draw on the diagram to describe the dental problem that the patient has

  • Calendar to record patient's pain & diet history

  • Aftercare reminder message send to the patient every once in a while

  • Engage app interface / design to keep user engage and improve their oral health behavior

  • Video with doctor talking about dental health behavior

  • Patient rarely receive follow-up after a visit or treatment

  • Doctor does not have access to the patient's diet history & pain history

  • Progress report for the patient to view their daily brushing behavior & treatment information

Concet Generation:
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Concept Ideations

Personal Map of mouth

Personalized Oral Health Analysis & Suggestions 

Visit / Symptoms History

Personalized Oral Health Reminder 





  • Digital scratch pad

  • Personal Map of mouth

    • 3D model of teeth

    • Problem areas, past treatments

  • Oral health analysis graph helps students to better visualize their oral health condition

  • Personalized suggestions to help students to further improve / maintain oral health

  • Enforce behavior by reminding users of good oral practices

  • Student inputs their diet into app 3 weeks prior to teeth cleaning

  • Student receives personalized reminders from dentist post-teeth cleaning

Pre - Treatment / Post Treatment


  • Feels pain

  • Is able to use sensor in toothbrush to mark location of pain

  • Marks and describes on app interface to show dentist


  • After treatment, dentist is able to update the map with the crown

  • Marks date, as well as description of issue + treatment for that tooth

Final Design Concept:

Design Goal:

  • Bridge the communication gap between patients and dentists

  • Shape good dental behavior among users through personalized feed with users’ data, as well as tips

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The patient feels pain

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Locate painpoint using the smart toothbrush

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Fill out pain and medication record

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Easily describe the situation during the next clinical visit

User Testing
& Receive Feedback From Clinicians:
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Think Aloud -- Design Issues We found During Our Usability Testing

Personalized Feed and Tips:

  • Tips should have been on another page

Pain Recording:

  • Feels like the user is scheduling an appointment, when they are not


  • Remove feature, too much going on

Design Specification:
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Patient's Interface

Profile Page

Teeth Diagram

Pain Record



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Clinician's Interface

User Scenario:
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With HailDental, a user with mouth pain can use their high-tech toothbrush to locate their pain point


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The toothbrush would communicate with the app and HailDental visualizes the specific location of the pain


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In addition, the user can specify what type of pain they are experiencing and other factors


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The pain summary is updated and the Doctor has access to their profile


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Once they go into the dentist's office, they are treated


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The dentist explains that they had to get a crown because their filling fell out


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The patient is able to track the history of their pain, symptoms, and treatment through the calendar


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12 hours after the visit, the user is reminded to avoid eating sticky foods for the next day


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The app also reminds the patient to practice healthy dental behaviors and there are also dental tips for user to read


Video Sketch of Experience
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