Much can change over the course of five years. People who were living in 2014 were just about to be introduced to voice-activated assistants like the Amazon Echo. In ‘19, they, and other competing clones, were in many households. The dental field has seen a tremendous change in that same span of time.
There is still much that is familiar for people going to general dentist in Jacksonville. They still greet the same receptionists and sit in the same dentist’s chairs while meeting the same staff. But many other aspects of a dental visit have changed over the course of five years. All of these have happened to make life easier for both patients and dentists.
While CEREC technology has been around for many years and has shaved waiting time by a significant margin, one of the biggest leaps has made its way to the dental office. That’s 3-D printing.
Instead of having to wait for things like crowns, braces, or implants, just to name a few things, a dentist can scan the patient’s mouth and then print a working piece of dental equipment in a very short amount of time. Coupled with the mouth-scanning software, these are quite capable of producing much more precise items that will usually require a lot less refining.
Dentists have embraced this technology, with many offices bringing this equipment in over the past five years. As the technology keeps evolving, these will likely be standard equipment in every office.
For the longest time, the way X-rays were done was for the hygienist or dentist to drape a lead apron over the patient and have them bite down on plates that were situated at really awkward angles. There would be a wait while the X-rays developed and then the dentist would puzzle them out on a light board.
No more. Even some traditional X-rays are being sent to a computer and there are digital ones that are near-instantaneous and are in much higher-definition than the old way. The radiation is much lower and an already minimal risk has been reduced even more.
Dentists can also enhance these digital images so that they can get an even better idea of what they are seeing. If there’s an error, it can be fixed without needing to take another X-day. On the environmental side, it also saves having to use special chemicals to develop the X-rays.
Cavity Detection by Laser
A dentist usually checks for cavities by poking impeach individual tooth with a sharp instrument. If it sticks, that is indicative of tooth decay. Now there is a much better tool for them to use – a laser.
They use the laser in conjunction with a visual examination – it gives a reading back after it’s inserted into the mouth. The higher the number, the greater the probability of tooth decay. There are some that also use fluorescence.
Sometimes it can be too sensitive, so the dentist also has to trust their eyes, too. There are still some areas that lasers cannot reach in the mouth and other methods will be needed there, but it can still reach a large scope and make things a lot more precise than the point-and-stick method. Technology may be able to eventually get it to work on teeth with fillings.
Cavity-detection is not the only use for lasers in dentistry. They can also help reshape gums in gum disease surgery, remove cavities, whiten teeth, and remove lesions. Patients often don’t need as many sutures and anesthesia may not even be required.
Like many other aspects of technology, the dental field will never sit idle. There will be improvements made to the newer technology and the pipeline will introduce exciting changes in upcoming years – some of which people may not even be able to currently visualize.
The world of dentistry has made incredible leaps in less than 100 years – going from people applying paste to sticks to being able to have a set of teeth made in minutes. Its course still remains headed steadily forward.
Dr. Shaista Najmi, a general dentist in Jacksonville, has always been keeping track of changes in dentistry. She uses them, along with her kind demeanor, to make sure her patients have the best dental experience possible. People who have questions about advances in dental technology can ask at their next checkup at Ivory Dental Jacksonville – 904-998-1555.