Cone beam scanner technology aids in the diagnosis of dental problems in our Austin, TX practice
Not far into the 20th Century, physicians and dentists discovered the power of x-ray imaging. Using what was then state-of-the-art technology, health care providers were able to identify internal structures without the need for surgery. Today, we have seen another significant advancement in the area of diagnostic imaging: the development of cone beam computed tomography. We are pleased to incorporate this type of scanner into our practice, elevating our service-level to Austin, TX area.
Cone beam tomography is similar to traditional x-ray imaging in some ways and to CT imaging, found in the hospital setting, in others. Compared to the conventional form of x-ray visualization used for more than a century, this technology is far more precise. In the dental setting, cone beam tomography allows us to pinpoint intricate oral structures including the sinus, nerves, and root canals. More than simple visualization, tomography shows us a 3D view of vital areas in the jaw and face. What this means for you is more conservative care and a better outcome from procedures performed by your experienced dentist.
How cone beam computed tomography works
Traditional x-ray imaging relies on light to obtain a grayscale image of what lies beneath the skin. As a singular snapshot is captured, bone and soft tissue stand out based on the degree of penetration of energy. While beneficial, this limited technology provides us with only one perspective of underlying structures.
Cone beam scanners rotate capturing potentially hundreds of views of the oral structure; each at a slightly different angle. Imaging takes less than 20 seconds, during which the images are processed in a powerful software program to formulate a virtual animation. This animation does not move on the viewing screen. Instead, it creates a singular three-dimensional view of the tooth, jaw, and other maxillofacial matter. On the viewing screen, the 3D image can be rotated up and down or from side-to-side. This manipulation enables us to see the greatest extent of detail without any discomfort to the patient.
Cone beam tomography is used in various areas of dentistry to facilitate predictable outcomes for treatments, such as: dental implants and other oral surgeries, root canal treatment, and the diagnosis of TMJ disorder, to name a few.
One of the most important uses of the 3D scanner is to evaluate existing root canals to see with absolute clarity whether one is failing or not. This state-of-the-art technology separates truth from speculation, allowing the patient to make an informed decision about whether to remove or keep their teeth.
We are proud to bring each and every patient the highest level of service and to complement personalized care with outstanding technologies like cone beam tomography. Call (512) 472-3565 to schedule your visit with Dr. Griffin Cole.