Exams, whether they are routine or used to diagnose an issue, are essential to helping you to maintain your oral health. Part of your oral exam involves a visual inspection of your teeth, gums and other oral tissues, checking for damage, tooth decay, and gum disease. However, not all areas of your mouth are easy to see. In the past, this was remedied with a handheld mirror. Today, at National Dental Melville, we use an intraoral camera.
What is an Intraoral Camera?
For years, the best way for us to get a better look at difficult to see areas of your mouth was with a small, metal mirror. While this mirror afforded us a peek at otherwise invisible areas, its capabilities are limited. At National Dental, these mirrors have been replaced by the intraoral camera.
An intraoral camera is an electronic handheld camera. It is approximately the size of a small pen. There is a tiny camera at one end of the wand. The tool is hooked up to a computer. As we move the camera around in your mouth, it captures real-time images, which are displayed on a monitor. This camera provides us with a unique, up close and personal look at all of the visible structures inside your mouth.
Getting a Closer Look at Your Mouth
The intraoral camera is equipped with numerous features. Along with capturing real-time images, it also takes stills. We can easily snap an image of an area we find suspicious and examine the image without needing to hold the camera in your mouth. With specialized software, we can zoom in on certain areas of the image and enhance it, getting a clearer picture. We can also change the display from black and white to color, to negative. All of these features are designed to give us an in-depth look into your mouth and spot the smallest issues. We can then take appropriate measures to treat those issues, preventing potentially serious complications.
Become More Involved in Your Care
For years, you would sit in the dental chair while your exams were being performed. We would explain what we saw and discuss any issues we came across. For many patients, simply being told what is happening isn’t enough. You may have had trouble imaging what was being described. You might not think the issue was all that serious, or that there was even a problem at all. With the intraoral camera, you can see everything that we see. With a visual aid, it is much easier for you to understand the severity of any oral health issues and why we recommend certain treatments.
Easy Storage of Your Images
In our office, your records are stored digitally. This includes all of your images. Any images we take with the intraoral camera can easily be stored in a digital file. When we need to review them or compare them to newer images, we can recall the images with a few clicks of a button.
Easing Your Anxiety
Some dental patients experience fear and anxiety when it comes to dental treatment. Even routine cleanings and exams can be difficult. For some, the lack of control, and not knowing what is happening, is what causes this anxiety. With the intraoral camera, you can see exactly what is happening, so you are not left wondering. This can go a long way in helping you to relax during dental treatment.
The intraoral camera has allowed us the ability to diagnose oral health issues in their earliest stages before they become a serious problem. For more information, call National Dental Melville today at (631) 816-2277!