New Waves in Dentistry

New Waves in Dentistry

Technology is always changing whether it’s the latest cell phone, medical devices or household items all of which help to improve our lives. Now new advancements are seen in dentistry.  Four noteworthy changes are listed below making you wonder what took them so long and how did dentists function without these latest advancements.

High-Tech X-Rays: Digital x-rays (like digital camera) have replaced traditional radiographs. Digital x-ray has an electronic sensor that is placed in the mouth and the images captured are scanned to a computer for the dentist to review. No more wasted films if x-rays need to be retaken.  Cavities as well as bone structure can also be viewed.  An Endodontist, root canal specialist, can also use the digital x-ray to see if they thoroughly clean the canal during a procedure.

Cavity Detection Laser: A dental explorer or sickle probe is an instrument used to detect tooth decay, It used to poke around the inside of the mouth and if it sticks or gets caught in the tooth then they would examine the tooth for decay.   With the diode laser, decay tooth tends to glow to the proportion of the decay when the wavelength hit the tooth.  Basically the laser detects decay quicker and less guess work. This however, doesn’t replace x-ray because it mainly detects decay on the chewing surface of the tooth.

CAD/CAM Technology: CAD is computer-assisted design and CAM is computer-assisted manufacture which requires fewer visits to the dentist when doing cosmetic procedures such as crowns and bridges. Instead of having molds made and sent to a lab for a permanent crown, the tooth is drilled to prepare for a crown and a picture is taken by the computer and the image sent to the machine that makes the crown right in the office.

 

Thinner Veneers: Veneers are great for covering the front of crooked and unattractive teeth.  The front of the tooth would be filed down to compensate for the thickness of the veneers.  Now with the use of thinner veneers less of the tooth surface is lost and more of the tooth is kept intact.

 

Original Article– WebMD Medical Reference
Reviewed by Michael Friedman, DDS on June 04, 2014

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