How Are 3D Dental Scanners Reshaping Oral Care and Treatment?

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Seeing any dental issue is made easy by dentists, who can effortlessly identify the problem using specialized devices. However, have you ever pondered the nature of the device that enables them to visualize the precise structure of our teeth in three dimensions? The answer lies in 3D dental scanners, which play a pivotal role in facilitating accurate and detailed visualization of dental structures.

So, let’s dive in and learn more about these extraordinary devices.

What are 3D Dental Scanners?

3D dental scanners are advanced imaging devices used in dentistry to create detailed three-dimensional images of the teeth, jaw, and mouth. These innovative scanners are used in dentistry to digitize dental structures and aid in various dental procedures. These scanners offer numerous benefits over traditional imaging methods, such as 2D scans and dental impressions. They also offer improved patient experience, faster processing, and enhanced accuracy. Let’s delve into some key aspects of 3-dimensional dental scanners.

How do 3D Dental Scanners Work?

3D dental scanners, particularly intraoral scanners, work through advanced digital imaging technology. These scanners are equipped with digital cameras with advanced software. They use a light source projected onto the scanned objects, such as full dental arches, to create a digital impression of the oral cavity. The scanning software processes this data to display a real-time 3D model on a touch screen, providing accurate details of the hard and soft tissues located in the oral area through high-quality images. The scanner projects a light source onto the area to capture impressions digitally. This process eliminates the need for traditional physical impressions, wax-ups, and all-ceramic restorations, offering enhanced patient comfort and convenience.

Exploring the Major Benefits of 3D Dental Scanners

Below are the major benefits of dental intraoral 3D scanners.

·         Improved Patient Experience

3-dimensional dental scanners provide a more comfortable experience for patients, as they eliminate the need for uncomfortable tooth impressions and reduce scan times.

·         Enhanced diagnostic accuracy

The high-quality 3D images produced by these scanners enable dentists to make accurate diagnoses, leading to better treatment outcomes and the potential for early intervention in dental problems.

·         Efficient and precise imaging

3-dimensional dental scanners can capture precise replicas of the teeth and jaw, providing detailed and accurate measurements for better understanding before surgery and other dental procedures.

·         Faster Scans

Intraoral dental 3D scanners are small handheld scanners that go directly into the patient’s mouth to examine the inside as well as to scan the teeth directly. They are processed significantly faster than taking impressions in conventional ways, which allows dentists to skip the impression stage altogether.

·         Digital Impression Data

Intraoral scanners directly create a digital impression of the oral cavity, providing accurate details of the hard and soft tissues in the oral area.

·         Used in various Sub-Domains

3D dental scanners are widely used in dental practices for various purposes, including orthodontics, general and cosmetic dentistry, implants, and more.

·         Advanced Visualization Capabilities

Some 3-dimensional dental scanners offer advanced visualization capabilities for a seamless scanning experience, aiding in interproximal caries detection and enabling comparisons over time.

Understanding the Pivotal Types of 3D Dental Scanners

Below is a breakdown of the different types of 3-dimensional dental scanners:

·         Hand-held 3D dental scanners

Hand-held 3-dimensional dental scanners are portable devices used for scanning dental structures. They offer the advantages of mobility and ease of use, allowing for efficient scanning of dental impressions and models. For example, the AutoScan-DS-EX Pro (H) 3D dental scanner offers potent features for multiple applications, including scans of impressions and plaster models.

·         Intraoral 3D Dental Scanners

Intraoral 3D dental scanners are designed to be used directly inside the patient’s mouth to examine the teeth and surrounding structures. These scanners provide immediate processing of scans, eliminating the need for physical impressions. For instance, Shining 3D offers the Aoralscan 3 Wireless, which is their first wireless intraoral scanner, designed to enhance the whole treatment experience by being free from constraints and secondary contamination. Additionally, iTero scanners are known for their restorative, orthodontic, and lab solutions, including seamless software connectivity and advanced visualization capabilities.

·         Desktop or Laboratory 3D Dental Scanners

Desktop or laboratory 3-dimensional dental scanners are stationary machines used to scan synthetic items, such as dental impressions and models. They use structured light technology, or laser lines, to determine the shape of the dental part. These scanners are commonly used by dental labs to make appliances from premade impressions and are known for their greater accuracy. For instance, 3Shape offers a series of TRIOS 5 Wireless with intelligent scan technology specially designed for enhanced dental hygiene, advanced ergonomics, and a seamless scanning experience.

Bottom Line

3D dental scanners have emerged as indispensable tools in modern dentistry, revolutionizing the way dental professionals visualize, diagnose, and treat various oral health concerns. These advanced devices provide detailed three-dimensional representations of dental structures, enabling dentists to offer more accurate diagnoses, personalized treatment plans, and precise dental restorations.

The seamless integration of 3-dimensional dental scanners into dental practices has not only enhanced the efficiency and efficacy of dental procedures but also elevated the standard of patient care. As the technology continues to advance, the future of 3-dimensional dental scanners holds great promise, with ongoing innovations and potential applications that are poised to further transform the landscape of dental healthcare.

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