Dentists in the past have heavily relied on 2D x-rays to diagnose all dental problems such as decay and tooth pain. With the advance of modern technology, 3D x-rays, called Cone Beam CT, is now able to offer more accurate, less invasive care in many dental procedures, whilst utilizing less radiation. We discuss changes in 2 such procedures below.
Past: Dentists needed to ease back the gums to assess if bone levels are adequate for implants. This means patients undergo a minor surgery every time to have implants placed. A scary thought!
Now : This is no longer necessary. With 3D X-rays, we can take thousands of images and reconstruct them into a 3D model. This allows the dentist to digitally plan, and perform "keyhole surgery", with no tissues flap raised. The entire implant procedure can now be computer guided. This results in more accurate implant placement with a less invasive approach. There is minimal / no recovery time, due to its non-surgical nature.
Past : Dentist took 2D X-rays called OPGs to assess the proximity of nerve canals to wisdom teeth. In a 2D image, we cannot ascertain the position of the nerve canal accurately. This results in more surgical risk, and does not meet the standard of care to patients.
Now : Dentist takes 3D X-rays called Cone Beam CT. This gives the dentist a complete 360 degree view of the wisdom teeth, and its position relative to any nerve canals. CBCT takes approximately 1000 slices, with a accuracy of 380 micros ( approximately 4 tenth of a millimeter). This is compared to the 2D view and single image taken in the OPG. What this means for the patient, is safer surgical approaches by the dentist, more accurate diagnosis, and better patient care.
If you would like to find out more how 3D X-rays can make your experience at the dentist better, call us on 8383 1400.