The dentist will usually begin treatment for bruxism by recommending a night guard. The device protects the teeth from the harmful effects of bruxism while reducing the risk of injuries to the lip, jaw, tongue and gums. Nowadays, patients can choose to get over-the-counter night guards or professionally made devices.Getting a night guard from the…
Digital Dentistry: 3 Ways Digital Technology is Revolutionizing Dentistry
With the explosion of the digital revolution, digital dentistry is transforming the delivery of oral care to patients. There is an infusion of the best parts of yesterday’s effective techniques with modern methods, ensuring that patients get the best treatment. These are exciting times for both dental professionals and their patients. Knowing and staying updated with dentistry innovations allows patients to stay up to date with diagnosis, treatment options and general dental health care.
The applications of digital technology
Here are some of the ways digital technology has transformed different aspects of dentistry:
Digital records and consultations
Unlike before, dentists and patients are now able to collaborate better. Digital records take only a tiny part of the storage space that paper charts and films required, allowing dentists to optimize their space better. Online scheduling allows patients to create, modify and cancel appointments at will. Specialized software makes remote consulting in real time possible, including for complex cases.
Websites and social media platforms allow interaction between and among patients, dentists and staff members. Any patient with internet access can quickly learn about their specific condition and the available treatment options. Online review platforms allow people to share their dental experiences with others.
CAD/CAM design and 3D printing
One of the challenging aspects of dental procedures is lab-fabricated dental restorations. The dentist will take impressions and send them to the dental lab. This means patients have to endure temporary restorations while waiting for the production of the final restoration. Fortunately, digital technology in the form of computer-aided design and 3D printing has revolutionized this process. Dentists who use this option can produce many restorations, including crowns, onlays and veneers, in their office and complete the restoration process in only one dental appointment.
Digital impressions, x-rays and images
Traditional dental impressions are not exactly exciting for dentists or patients. Patients have to bite into a mold, avoid gagging and wait uncomfortably as the dentist tries to remove the hardened material from their mouths. Impressions in digital dentistry are more comfortable, quick and less messy.
Digital x-rays generate less radiation compared to regular x-rays. They also have fewer storage requirements and can be magnified and manipulated to observe different areas of the mouth. If the dentist needs a more thorough or closer view of the oral cavity, there are multiple convenient digital scanning options. Intra-oral cameras take digital images that can be used with digital x-rays for a more accurate diagnosis.
Optical scanners and digital color maps ensure that the dentist can produce dental restorations that accurately match the existing teeth. Electronic sensors assess how the teeth align. Cone beam CT scans produce a detailed 3D image of the oral anatomy, thus improving the precision with procedures like dental implants.
Digital dentistry is not meant to replace evidence-based dentistry. However, using digital tools effectively can make dental procedures safer, better and less painful. To learn more about digital technology, contact the dental office to schedule an appointment.
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