“The Tooth And Nothing But The Tooth”
By Chris “Dr Smile Maker” Branfield
Keeping Up With The Digital Age
Hello again, I hope you are well. Well, as I write it is nearly Easter and the sun is out. Hope it’s a nice long weekend. We all need a good rest from time to time. These last few years has seen a lot of fast moving changes in the way we live. Most of this is due to the digital age. Some of these changes are good, some not so good. Social media is good to connect with friends and family but can put pressure on kids growing up. Sometimes it’s good to escape by just turning off your phone, eh?
Dentistry Moves On
In 2012 we at Castle Park Dental Care went away from conventional film with x-rays and onto digital. This makes things quicker and more convenient. It also gets rid of the need for liquid fixer and developer that ultimately need to be disposed of. We hung on until 2012 because up until then there was no gain in terms of quality of the x-ray images, which is important for diagnosis. Once the quality became on a par with film, with scope for improvement, we took the plunge and have not looked back. It’s better for the environment, now gives more consistent results and gives a much reduced radiation doses, up to 90% less.
To get a 3D scan we used to have to send people to hospital for a conventional CT scan (a day trip to Leeds). This gave a very large image will a relatively high radiation dose. Then we couldn’t read the data and had to send off to a different company to make sense of it. This took time and was expensive.
With the newer Dental Cone Beam CT scans we can get smaller, more specific images and the dose is reduced by loads. Also, they come with software that we use to view them and make accurate measurements. This reduces cost by about 75%. That’s we have one and use it on a regular basis
Normal x-ray images show detail in just 2 dimensions. Most of the time this is enough but for more detailed diagnosis and treatment planning we need 3D. It is useful when things are superimposed. Examples of this include seeing exactly where a nerve is in relation to a wisdom tooth. Another example is planning implants. A normal 2D X-ray will show bone height but not how thick it is.
Detailed Dental Implant Planning
We can now use digital technology to design and 3D print an implant placement guide after virtually planning the implant placement using the software. This can mean more minimally invasive procedures with faster healing and less discomfort. It also makes restoring with crowns etc. an easier process.
So, 3D planning can really improve, diagnosis and planning and ,most importantly SAFETY. I bet that’s got your pulse racing!, I know I am such an anorak.
Europe Here I Come
Next month I’m off to Holland and Belgium with a mate doing a bit of a World War 2 motorbike tour. A bit after that I’m off to Slovenia to an international Medical laser conference. Last year it was a great learning experience and I was one of the invited speakers. I’m looking forward to updates on Laser Dentistry, the most gentle dentistry on the planet.
Until next time. Take care and be good.
Chris Branfield is Principal Dentist at Castle Park Dental Care, Castle Villa, 28 Castle Road, Cottingham, telephone 01482 772550. He has been in dental practice for 26 years and has a special interest in Life Changing, Pain Free Dentistry with Dental Implants, Teeth Straightening and Cosmetic Dentistry. And, not only that Chris is founder member and trustee of Dental Mavericks charity- ending the daily dental pain of Moroccan kids. For more patient success stories and Chris’ Humanitarian work go here now www.castleparkdental.co.uk