All of the dental technology in our office geared towards enhancing the treatment we provide would be useless without technology that improves our diagnostic capabilities. Using a variety of digital imaging techniques, we are able to gather an abundance of information so that we can make the best treatment recommendations possible.
Digital x-rays offer significant advantages over traditional film x-rays, both for the patient and our diagnostic abilities. Not only can digital x-rays reduce the radiation delivered to the patient by up to 90% as compared to film x-rays, but they also appear on the computer screen immediately after being taken. The old wait to develop x-rays is an inconvenience that is now easily avoided. Additionally, the image quality is far superior to that of film x-rays, which greatly aids in the diagnosis of smaller, more subtle issues before they progress to larger problems.
Cone Beam CT (3-D X-ray)
For cases that require a more detailed examination, we utilize a cone beam CT machine to provide a 3-D x-ray of the patient’s upper and lower jaws. This is especially useful in diagnosing conditions that are not visualized with routine 2-D x-rays and for planning implant surgeries. Important anatomical structures, such as nerves and sinuses, can be accurately mapped out so that they can be properly accounted for during surgery. We combine this imaging with our CEREC technology to perform computer-guided implant placement, which makes implant surgery much safer and more precise.
While tactile examination and bitewing x-rays remain the preferred methods of detecting most cavities, sometimes cavities can present themselves in unusual ways. The Dexis CariVu is a transilluminating camera that shines laser light on the teeth and can provide additional visual information about the presence or progression of a cavity. By using this camera in addition to our routine diagnostic tools, we are able to both intercept small cavities before they cause further damage and determine which early cavities do not yet require treatment. This camera can also help identify small cracks that predispose teeth to larger fractures.