Welcome to Dr. Bahrami Dental Care

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Technology

Technology


The complex devices all around us — from long-range satellite links in our cars and offices to powerful computers in our hand-held gadgets — prove beyond a doubt that we live in a technology-driven world. In the field of dentistry, new technology is constantly changing the way diseases are diagnosed, routine procedures are performed, and illnesses are prevented. Although they may seem unfamiliar at first, new and improved dental technologies offer plenty of real benefits for patients. Here’s a look at some of the latest technologies at Dr. Bahrami’s Dental Care.

Advantages of an Intra-Oral Camera

  • An intra-oral camera enables us to make you more of an active partner in your dental treatment so that you can see what we see — an especially important benefit when we need to discuss additional treatments or to explain treatment options so that you can make informed decisions.
  • Based on the above, we have found that our patients are more comfortable asking questions and are better able to understand a treatment option or oral hygiene concern.
  • Because it gives you the real-world picture of your dental hygiene, the intra-oral camera is ideally suited to show you techniques for improving your oral health and hygiene habits.
  • With its powerful magnification (much superior to the naked eye), it reveals the early stages of maladies such as gum disease and cavities.
  • We can also refer back to these images with you to show you changes in your oral health and hygiene or how a multi-phase treatment is progressing.
  • Furthermore, it can provide insurance companies with the proof they require to approve a needed treatment. We would be happy to demonstrate the advantages of our intra-oral camera at your next visit to the dental office.

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

It’s an adage we prove true many times each day in our office with our intra-oral camera. Prior to the development of this technology, some of our patients found it challenging to understand concerns such as dental decay and periodontal disease. Now, we are able to display, pause, and zoom in during our video examination of the problem area so that you can see it for yourself — all in color and crystal clear.

Could Cone Beam CT Benefit You?

Each patient’s situation is different, and must be carefully considered by a clinical professional before any test or procedure is performed. While CBCT delivers a smaller dose of radiation (X-rays) than many other diagnostic tests, it still carries a small risk — particularly for younger patients, or those with other health problems. We will take into account all risks, benefits and alternatives before recommending this (or any) medical procedure.

One of the best ways we can partner with you in your oral healthcare is to help you understand your examination, diagnosis, and treatment. A valuable tool we use to accomplish our patient-education goals is the intra-oral camera.

This small, handheld video camera is about the same size as a dental mirror (or an oversized pen) and comes with a disposable plastic sheath for contamination prevention. We use it to take actual pictures of your teeth with up to 25 times magnification and project them onto a screen to review with you. We can also use it to give you a video tour of your entire mouth so that you can see things such as plaque deposits, decay, worn teeth, and broken or missing fillings. Lastly, we will print pertinent images for your patient file for future reference and can even print images for you to take home.

Where Cone Beam CT Is Used?

The ability to see fine anatomical structures in 3-D has proven invaluable in treating conditions in many areas of dentistry.

  • Orthodontics: Having accurate information on the position of teeth and jaws helps determine exactly how and where teeth should be moved.
  • Dental implants: Detailed CBCT images are used to determine the optimum location for the titanium implants while avoiding nerves, sinuses and areas of low bone density.
  • Orthognathic Jaw Surgery and Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disease: Patients benefit when the specialists who treat these conditions can evaluate their anatomy with the three-dimensional perspective that cone beam CT provides.
  • Oral Surgery: Treatment for tumors or impacted teeth is aided by the level of fine detail shown in these scans.
  • Endodontics: Dentists performing intricate procedures (like complex root canals, for example) can benefit from a clearer visualization of the tooth’s anatomy.
  • Sleep Apnea: Imaging the tissues and structures of the nose, mouth and throat can aid in diagnosis and treatment of this dangerous condition.

How Cone Beam CT Works?

X-rays, like visible light, are a form of energy on the electromagnetic spectrum. Just as light makes an image on photographic film (or a digital camera sensor), X-rays can also form an image. The difference is that energetic X-rays can penetrate bone and soft tissue, and reveal its hidden structure by their varying degrees of absorption; in other words, they form a grayscale picture of what’s underneath the surface. But conventional X-rays are limited: Like a still-life picture, they show only one perspective on the scene.

Now imagine a “flip book” — the kind of small book made up of a series of pictures, each slightly different. When you rapidly  page through it, you may see (for example) an animated cartoon or a still subject from different perspectives. If you could put together a flip book made from a series of X-ray “slices” of the same subject, taken at slightly different angles, you would be able to create an “animation” of the X-rays. And from there, it’s only one more step to making a 3-D model.

That’s exactly what CBCT scanners do. Using a rotating imaging device that moves around the patient’s head, the scanner records between 150 and 600 different X-ray views in under a minute. Then, a powerful computer processes the information and creates a virtual model of the area under study. When it’s done, the model appears like a three-dimensional image on a computer screen: It can be rotated from side to side or up and down, examined in greater or less detail, and manipulated in any number of ways — all without the patient feeling any discomfort. or even being present.

Cone Beam CT Imaging.

In the early 20th Century, not long after X-rays were discovered, medical professionals recognized their value as diagnostic tools: They could clearly reveal structures hidden inside the body without the need for risky surgery. At the dawn of the 21st century, a revolutionary new technology has entered the diagnostic arena. Today, Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) promises to change the way many dental problems are diagnosed and treated.

Cone Beam CT has some similarities with conventional Xrays, and also with the standard CT scans you would get in a hospital setting. But it’s a quantum leap forward in technology and diagnostic precision. For the dentist, it offers the ability to visualize intricate structures inside the mouth, such as root canals, nerves and sinuses (air-filled spaces) in the jaw — in three dimensions — without surgery. For the patient, it can reduce the need for invasive procedures, shorten treatment time and offer the chance for a better outcome.

The detailed diagnostic images that CBCT provides have made it an essential tool in many dental specialties. But, as with any diagnostic tool that uses radiation, the medical benefits offered must be weighed against the (small) potential risks of the procedure.

What are some advantages of using an anesthesiawand?

  • One of the most important advantages is that it doesn’t look threatening, as it eliminates the initial anxiety upon seeing a syringe.
  • We can use it in conjunction with other conscious sedation methods (i.e. nitrous oxide) for a more comfortable treatment.
  • It provides painless injections for all routine dental treatments including root canals, crowns, fillings, and cleanings.
  • Using the wand enables us to deliver a more consistent and comfortable injection, especially in more sensitive areas such as the front of your mouth or in your palate (roof of your mouth) where tissue is less elastic.
  • Due to the wand’s penlike grasp, we can more easily handle, rotate, and accurately glide the wand into precise, hard-to-reach places to deliver anesthetics.
  • Last but not least, we find that many of our patients who previously experienced a fear of injections overcame their fear after the first use. This fact alone provides them with a better, less stressful dental experience while enabling us to relax, focus, and do our best work.

Here’s how it works

Your anesthesia will be delivered through a syringe-free wand or pen-like device that is connected to a computer. Before the tiny needle attached to the wand is inserted, the computer delivers a small amount of anesthetic so that the insertion site starts going numb before the needle enters the skin.

Once the needle is in place, the computer delivers an accurate, consistent amount of anesthesia so that you remain comfortable — typically below the threshold of pain. The computer’s microprocessor automatically adjusts the injection pressure for different tissue densities, maintaining a constant, comfortable flow of anesthesia. This fact is especially important to understand because the culprit with most injection anxiety is discomfort from anesthetic being injected too quickly, not from the needle entering the skin.

Anesthesia Wand.

If you’ve ever had needle phobia, you might like to learn about a new technology referred to as an “anesthesia wand,” which is a computer-controlled dental-injection tool. In fact, some people feel it is more of a “magic” wand because it doesn’t look like a typical injection and it works even better by making the entire process virtually painless.

Laser Diagnosis & Treatment.

They’re inside DVD players and scanner wands — and now, they are making their dental debut. Lasers are being used to detect tiny spots of tooth decay, treat gum disease, and remove cancerous cells in the mouth. They are also employed in gum surgery even cavity treatments!

Intra-Oral Camera.

A picture is worth… plenty, when it comes to helping you understand your dental examination, diagnosis and treatment! With these tiny cameras, you can see what the dentist sees, on a small chair-side monitor.
The images of your teeth can be saved as stills or video — or even printed out — so you can see exactly what’s happening in your mouth.

Digital X-Rays.

Diagnostic x-rays have long been invaluable to dentistry. The emergence of digital technology in the past decade, however, has made dental x-rays safer and even more useful. Digital technology cuts radiation exposure to patients by as much as 90% over traditional x-rays. And there are other advantages including the elimination of waiting time for pictures to develop, and sharper images that can be enhanced instantly to show detail.

Digital Dental Impressions.

Remember biting down on a tray of putty-like material, so a model could be made of your teeth? A digital imaging device now makes that unnecessary. Instead, your teeth can be “dusted” with a fine reflective powder, which is then recorded by a special camera. A series of images is converted into a 3-D model, which can be used to assess a tooth’s condition or fabricate dental restorations.

Dental Implants.

Tooth replacement took a giant leap forward with the widespread use of dental implants — today’s preferred method of replacing teeth. Dental implants are small titanium posts that replace the root part of your missing tooth. A realistic dental crown is then attached to the implant for a replacement tooth that looks and feels exactly like what nature gave you.

Cone Beam CT Imaging.

What’s better than an x-ray of your teeth? An on-screen, movable 3-D representation of your jaws! By taking a series of x-ray “slices” and stitching the images together with a powerful computer program, Cone Beam CT imaging creates a virtual model of your mouth.

CAD/CAM Same-day Crown Fabrication.

Hate to wait? By combining 3-D digital imaging and computer-aided design and manufacturing technology, it’s now possible to have permanent crown restorations completed in a single day — much better than leaving the office with temporary crowns and coming back weeks later for permanent ones!

Anesthesia Wand.

If you don’t like needles, this may be just what the doctor ordered: a pen-like device that meters out the precise amount of anesthetic you need — and even pre-numbs the insertion site, so you really won’t feel a thing!