Why dental X-rays are Important:
X-rays are an essential part of modern dentistry, as they provide us with the ability to identify problems that may not be apparent through a visual examination alone. X-rays allow Dr. Lanie to more effectively…
- View the status of developing teeth
- Get a good look at tooth roots
- Locate cavities
- Monitor the condition of the bone around the tooth
- Check for periodontal disease
We use digital X-rays:
Our practice uses digital dental radiographs, or digital X-rays, which are a modern improvement over traditional X-rays.
This type of X-ray uses digital sensors instead of the photographic X-ray film used in the past, allowing for enhanced computer images of oral structures such as your teeth, gums, jawbone, and more.
These types of X-rays allow us a better picture of what is happening inside of your mouth, making it easier to spot problems and provide a proper diagnosis for any conditions you may have.
Some of the advantages offered by digital X-rays include:
- Digital X-rays use between 50% to 80% less radiation than traditional X-rays.
- They’re able to better reveal small hidden areas of decay that might exist below fillings, under other restorations, or between teeth.
- They can help us identify bone infections, obsesses, tumors, or gum disease, which might have otherwise gone unnoticed in a visual examination.
- Digital X-rays can easily be viewed on a computer monitor, enhanced with software tools, and quickly sent electronically to a specialist if needed. This also makes it faster to send to insurance companies for faster insurance claims.
- The digital format allows for easy storage; there’s no physical X-ray that needs to be filed and stored.
- Digital X-rays are more environmentally-friendly.
As with everything we do at Lanie Family Dentistry, we’ve chosen to use this technology because it allows us to provide you with the highest-quality dental treatment possible.
Technology is continuing to make things better and easier for everyone, and this includes your dentist. Modern intraoral cameras make dentistry easier and better in a number of ways.
What are intraoral cameras?
An intraoral camera is a small camera that is shaped like a wand. They often have their own light source and are capable of taking high-resolution photos or videos from inside the patient’s mouth.
What are intraoral cameras used for?
Dentists have always needed to see inside a patient’s mouth in order to check for and diagnose problems. This can be somewhat difficult at times, as it requires proper lighting and the use of a mirror to help the dentist see things at angles that cannot be made out with a direct line of sight.
Intraoral cameras can make things like tooth fractures or cavities easier to spot, thanks to high-resolution images. Additionally, as these are digital images, they can be captured or displayed on a TV, making it easier to show the patient what the issues the dentist may have found or to include a photo with the patient’s dental records.
These cameras are just one of the many ways that technology is making dentistry better for both dentists and their patients.
Lasers are becoming increasingly common in dentistry since being first approved for use by the FDA in 1990. They can perform a wide variety of different tasks and have many advantages over traditional tools. Dr. Lanie has chosen to use a laser in his practice because of the extra benefits it provides to our patients.
Some of the benefits of lasers in dentistry include…
- Faster healing
- Less bleeding during and after treatment
- Less need for anesthesia
- Requires fewer or no stitches or sutures
- Reduced risk of infection since the laser sterilizes the area
What can lasers be used for in dentistry?
There are a few different types of lasers used in dentistry, and they are each suited to different tasks, such as…
Some lasers can be used as a means for spotting cavities by detecting by-products that are produced by tooth decay.
Preparing a tooth for a filling
Hart tissue dental lasers can be used as an alternative to the traditional tools for removing tooth decay when preparing a tooth for a filling.
Treating tooth sensitivity
Tooth sensitivity can be caused as the result of dentin, the middle layer of the tooth, becoming exposed. Lasers can be used to seal the tubules in the dentin that makes the tooth sensitive to hot and cold.
Lasers can be used in endodontic (root canal) procedures such as an apicoectomy, or root-end surgery.
Gum contouring / Crown lengthening
Soft tissue lasers can be used to reshape gum tissue, changing the shape of the gum line or revealing more of the tooth enamel that may be hidden behind the gums.
Lasers can be used to treat issues such as tongue-tie by severing connective tissues that limit the range of motion of the tongue.
What is VELscope®?
It’s estimated that around 54,000 cases of oral cancer are diagnosed in the US annually. While it’s a very serious condition with a higher death rate than many other types of cancer, it can be very treatable when detected early. For this reason, our office uses VELscope, an innovative tool for detecting oral cancer during its early stages. VELscope is an FDA-approved system used to screen for oral cancer and other abnormalities which may not otherwise be visible to the eye.
How does VELscope® work?
VELscope helps Dr. Lanie detect oral cancer during the course of a regular dental exam by measuring natural tissue fluorescence. There are chemical compounds in oral tissues known as “fluorophores” which, when exposed to one wavelength of light, will emit their own, different wavelength of light. For instance, when excited by exposure to a blue light, the fluorophores may give off a green light.
As the fluorescence of the tissue can reveal information about the difference in the structure or metabolic activity of the cells, Dr. Lanie can use this to spot abnormalities that may be indicative of oral cancer.
VELscope has the benefit of being easier to use than past methods which used reflected light instead of fluorescence; these previous methods required the patient to swish around a dye in their mouth in order to be effective, while VELscope can be done during a normal exam in just two minutes.
Early detection is vital to your survival chances when it comes to oral cancer, so we’ve chosen to use this technology to help us spot it as soon as possible. We urge all our patients to be sure to come in for regular check-ups and oral cancer screenings so that we can help keep you safe and healthy.