Yes, you hear it every day. Things have changed. Technology has rapidly advanced in our world and it is no different in dentistry. Dental materials, equipment and techniques have gone through an evolution of change that has been rapid and continues to advance. At the Advance Dental Group we believe that technology will never replace our skill expertise and diagnostic abilities. However, dental technology gives us added tools and supplemental tests that enhance our abilities to deliver excellent results for our patients.
One of the first things you will notice in treatment rooms are flat screen monitors mounted to the ceiling. To help communicate dental health issues to patients we have intra-oral camera’s that can show you pictures of your teeth. Now you can see what your dentist is seeing. You will be able to see and understand why treatment is recommended.
A conventional radiograph, (x-ray), with film requiring processing is no longer required. Now we have digital x-rays. Your x-rays are available immediately on the monitor in your treatment room reducing waiting time. The image can be measured and managed to enhance features that allow the dentist to see decay and changes to soft and hard tissues for more accurate diagnosis. Most of all the radiation that you are exposed to is diminished up to 75% from conventional x-rays.
Lasers have also become popular. At the Advance Dental Group we have lasers that help us determine the depth of decay and whether it needs to be fixed. Not all decay needs to be fixed. Decay that is insipient or still in enamel can often remain stagnant for many years. Specially designed lasers project light into the tooth. The light is reflected back and is caught by a sensor that is calibrated to determine how far the decay has entered the tooth. This tool allows us to make more definite decisions about whether the decay needs to be fixed and allows us to monitor the progression of the decay overtime.
U.V. lights are now being used to help identify oral cancers. Research has shown that oral cancer will fluoresce differently than normal tissues in the mouth under UV light. The Identifier is a tool that we use to help determine whether the ulceration on your cheek is something we need to biopsy or monitor.
New materials including bonding agents, porcelains and cements are allowing for more comfortable, stronger and better aesthetic results than ever before. Along with research these technological advancements benefit the patient and allow dentists to provide longer lasting and more predictable results.