Benefits of Digital Imaging in Dentistry

Benefits of Digital Imaging in Dentistry

February 1, 2021

In this article, we shall discuss what digital imaging in dentistry is, the various types of digital dental radiographs, and its benefits in dentistry.

Our current advancement in every sphere of our society is attributed to the technological advancements we have witnessed in recent years. Our healthcare systems have also witnessed significant improvement during this century. The use of modern technology allows medical practitioners to provide better healthcare services at affordable costs.

These days, dental practitioners use modern technology to effectively monitor, detect, treat, and diagnose oral complications and infections. An example of technology used to provide these exceptional services is the digital dental radiographs. Digital dental radiography provides high-quality computer images of oral structures such as your gums and teeth.

Methods of Acquiring Dental Images

Dental imaging is achieved using three methods. These are:

Direct method

This method involves the use of image recording electronic sensors put in your mouth.

Indirect method

The indirect method involves your dentist acquires dental images by viewing traditional dental X-rays using an X-ray film scanner.

Semi-indirect technique

Using this technique, your dentist combines a scanner and a sensor to transform dental X-rays into digital images.

Types of Digital Dental Radiographs

Types of digital radiographs are grouped into:

  • Intraoral dental X-rays

As the name suggests, these digital dental radiographs are taken inside your mouth. Intraoral X-rays are efficient in identifying cavities, monitor bone and teeth health, and monitor the status of growing teeth. These X-rays are the most popular among dentists and are accredited with exceptionally detailed images.

  • Extraoral dental X-rays

Extraoral dental X-rays are not used to detect individual tooth complications. These digital radiographs are used to detect potential complications with jaws, teeth, and temporal mandibular joints, identify affected teeth and observe jaw development and growth.

Types of extraoral dental X-rays include:

  • Multi-slice computed tomography (MCT)

MCT provides a digital image focusing on a layer of your mouth by blurring other layers. This X-ray allows your dentist to have a better view of structures that are not easily visible with the human eye.

  • Sialography

A sialography is used to detect complications affecting the salivary glands, such as Sjogren’s syndrome and blockages.

  • Panoramic X-rays (Panorex)

These X-rays are during the planning phase by dentists to establish the treatment used for dental implants, detect jaw complications, and diagnose cysts and bony tumors.

  • Cephalometric Projections

These digital dental radiographs provide a digital image of your entire head. These images allow your dentist to observe your teeth to identify any issues with your profile and jaw. This type of X-ray is used by orthodontists to establish a treatment plan for teeth alignment.

  • Cone-beam computerized tomography (CBCT)

The CBCT displays your body’s interior structures as a 3D digital image. These X-rays are used to detect facial bone complications, such as fractures and tumors.

Below are the types of intraoral dental X-rays:

  • Periapical X-rays (limited)

A periapical X-ray provides a detailed image of your tooth from its crown, past the root tips, to its supporting bone on either the lower or upper jaw. These areas are essential for detecting abnormalities in the root structure and the surrounding bone mass. This type of dental X-ray is used to detect endodontic lesions (abscess) and when treating severe gum disease.

  • Bitewing X-rays

These dental digital images are taken with you biting down on film. A bitewing X-ray provides a digital image of your tooth from its top to the level of its supporting bone. The Bitewing X-ray allows your dentist to identify the fit of dental restorations or crowns, the difference in bone density resulting from gum disease, identify decay between teeth, and the marginal integrity of your tooth fillings.

Benefits of Digital Imaging in Dentistry

As stated earlier, modern technology has significantly improved the quality of life and healthcare during this modern age. Below are some of the benefits you enjoy from digital imaging in Dentistry:

  • Vast amounts of data can be stored in compact size drives owing to the digital micro-storage technology.
  • Digital dental images are easier to transfer and store in the form of electronic patient records. Due to the easy and quick transfer of patient records, you can enjoy quicker dental insurance reimbursements.
  • Digital dental radiographs allow your dentist to examine areas in your mouth that are not visible to the human eye, thus facilitating the detection of oral complications in their early stages.
  • Early detection of dental complications save you time, the discomfort associated with dental complications, and money.
  • The PSP and digital sensors found in the technology used for digital dental imaging expose you to minimal radiation levels making digital imaging in dentistry safe.

In conclusion, digital imaging in dentistry has provided dentists with an edge in combating dental complications. The technology is safe and efficient. By using today’s dental imaging, dentists are able to provide patients with the best healthcare services in dentistry. For quality dental services using the latest technology in dentistry, visit us at Sunset Point Dental today.