At Daniel C. Harper, DMD, we utilize the 3D imaging to better understand the anatomy of your mouth, which is essential before we perform any type of corrective procedure. By using this state-of-the-art technology, Dr. Daniel Harper will be better prepared to accurately diagnose potential issues and develop the best possible treatment program for you.
How is 3D imaging different from a traditional x-ray?
A typical dental x-ray will just focus on the teeth, and for each image you’ll need one exposure. Therefore, to get the same picture as a 3D image, you’d need many exposures. 3D imaging shows considerably more than a simple 2D x-ray, as this newer technology will provide more accurate and complete visual information from every angle. Additionally, the data can be easily shared and duplicated without the worry of film getting lost.
How does it work?
Our 3D imaging system is essentially a digital x-ray that is mounted to a rotating arm. Similar to a digital camera, the system uses digital technology rather than traditional film to record your images. It’s referred to as cone beam technology because the scanner will project x-rays in the form of a cone-shaped beam.
When it is time for your scan, you’ll sit in a chair, and the scanner will move in a circle around your head. After one revolution, the scanner will have gathered all of the necessary data. You don’t need to make any special preparations before your scan.
Next, your technician can bring up any view that they need on their computer, whether this is a 2D, 3D, or panoramic view of your whole mouth. Dr. Daniel Harper will be able to view the images from any angle and use different magnifications to zoom in on problem areas, specifically those with the bones, airways, tissues, nerves and teeth. This information is essential for evaluating or planning proper treatment.
X-rays are a primary tool for early identification of dental problems. Detecting issues with x-rays before they become problematic can save you money in the long run. Early detection can help prevent the need for more extensive, expensive procedures or surgeries. X-rays are primarily used to detect:
||Internal tooth decay
||Cysts (fluid filled sacks at the base of your teeth)
||Tumors, both cancerous and non-cancerous
||Teeth that are still coming in
At Daniel C. Harper, DMD, we use digital x-rays, which have several advantages over traditional film based x-rays. Digital x-rays allow us to take x-rays with 1/5 of the radiation that you would receive from traditional dental x-rays. The worry of exposure to excess radiation is eliminated.
Large on-screen x-rays make patient communication more effective. The immediate observation of the images on the screen allows us to discuss your dental health quickly and accurately.
Digital radiography has greatly enhanced the practice of dentistry. It allows the patient and the doctor to see images of the teeth in higher resolution on a large format for easier detection of problems, all while decreasing the radiation exposure to the patient. The process we use further defines the radiograph, resulting in clinically meaningful images that are sharp, detailed and rich in contrast.
Images are available instantly after exposure, eliminating the wait and effort spent developing and mounting x-rays. If an image needs to be retaken, it can be done immediately. Digital format also allows us to send and receive your images electronically, allowing for a faster consultation with your dentist.
We use ultrasonic scalers for most adult dental cleanings. These devices use ultrasonic vibrations to help break down the plaque and calculus on the teeth that cause gingivitis and periodontal disease. The ultrasonic cleaners create microscopic bubbles that implode on the surface of the tooth, killing microbes and removing plaque and tartar in the process. Our instruments use a thin tip to better navigate in the periodontal pockets to help maintain optimal gingival health.
The procedure uses water and/or an antimicrobial liquid called chlorhexadine. It can remove tartar buildup in hard-to-reach areas, with no damage to the tooth enamel. Manual scaling often uses pressure for cleaning, while the vibration produced by the scaling tip of an ultrasonic scaler is barely perceptible. This makes ultrasonic cleaning suitable to those with sensitive teeth. The cleaning process is faster than manual scaling, making your visit more comfortable.
After your teeth have been cleaned with the ultrasonic cleaner, your teeth will be hand scaled to check for any residual deposits and then polished.