Email Send

In the Main Toolbar, click Email.

Email must be set up before you can send emails. Regular email is not a secure method of sending PHI.

You can send emails from several areas of Open Dental including:

The Edit Email Message window will open so you can enter email details.

When sending, the window is in compose mode. The Sent/Received status will be Neither and the Date/Time will be Unsent.

  1. Enter and verify information about the recipients and sender.
    • From: Defaults to the default email address in General Email Settings or the logged-on user's email (if set up, see Email Settings). Click the button to open a window listing all email address options for this user. Doubleclick an address to select, or highlight and click OK.

      Alternatively, enter an email address and alias manually (e.g. If bob@gmail.com is selected in the dropdown, and Sparkly Dental <bob@gmail.com> is entered, the recipient will see Sparkly Dental instead of bob@gmail.com).
      Note: Email addresses tied to digital signatures cannot be edited.
    • To: Defaults to the patient's email address on file. If you begin typing a new email, a recommended contact list will populate. You can select from the list, or continue typing the address.
    • CC (carbon copy): Enter email addresses that will receive a copy of the message. Blank by default.
    • BCC (blind carbon copy): Enter email addresses that will be sent a copy of the message, but who will not show as a recipient on any other recipient's email copy. Blank by default.
    • Signed By: Only shows if encrypted email has been set up on the local computer for the From email address. Click Sig to see details (see Digital Signatures below).
  2. Enter the email message subject and body.
    • Subject: The subject of the email message.
    • Body: The message text. If an Email Autograph is associated with the From address, it is inserted by default. If the autograph is associated to multiple email addresses, the autograph listed first is inserted.
    • To insert an Email Template, select it and click Insert. The template's subject and message will replace any existing text (including autographs) and associated attachments will be added.
    • To insert an email autograph, select it and click Insert. The autograph will automatically insert at the end of the email body text.
    • To edit the message using basic plain text click Edit Text.
    • To edit the message using HTML coding (for images, fonts, etc.) click Edit HTML. See HTML Email for more information.
      Note: If you have edited a message using Edit HTML, clicking the Edit Text button will switch to using plain text formatting. However, the HTML tags will not be stripped from the message automatically and you may need to delete them before sending.
  3. To attach images or files, click Attach, select the file, then click Open.
    • Double click an attachment to preview.
    • Right click to Open, Rename, or Remove the attachment.
  4. To send a clear text message (not encrypted), click Send. The message will be sent out immediately.
    • To send an encrypted email (Email Encryption Options), click Direct Message. Encrypted email must set up for the sender and the recipient must be a trusted source. If you experience issues sending encrypted email, it can be a permission issue. Try running Open Dental as an administrator.

All messages are permanently saved. They can be viewed in the Email Inbox, Sent Messages tab, and in the Account and Chart modules.

Save: Save an email without sending. Saved emails attached to a patient list in the Chart module and Commlog. If Open Dental shuts down unexpectedly, emails that are in progress are automatically saved.

Delete: Delete a sent email from Open Dental. It will remain on the mail server, but will not download again.

Attachments Tab

Attach files to the email. Click + to add an attachment. You will be prompted to locate and select the file.


Show Email Tab

Select where in Open Dental an individual email will show or not show. To show the email in an area, highlight it. To hide the email in the area, deselect it. By default, all areas are selected.


To view emails that have been hidden in all areas, go to the Email Inbox.

Digital Signatures

When sending encrypted email, a digital signature is sent with the message. To view signature details, click Sig.