X-rays have several uses in dentistry and are extensively relied upon to diagnose the oral profile of patients. Dental cone beam computed tomography (CT) is a variant of x-ray technology that is regularly used by dentists to study the structure of the oral cavity. These may be used to get a 3-D representation of your teeth, jawbone, nerve connections, and tissues among other parts of the oral cavity.
At Beaverton Oral Surgeons, we use only the best equipment to provide the highest level of dental care to all of our patients. Our staff extensively relies on modern solutions to study and design treatments for our patients. To learn more about how we acquire x-ray images of the maxillofacial cavity, book an appointment with us today.
What is Cone-Beam Computed Tomography Used For?
Computed tomography (CT) comes into the picture when regular x-rays are unable to provide relevant information about the patient’s condition. They are only used in special scenarios as the radiation coming from the equipment is far stronger than conventional x-ray machines. It uses special technology to derive 3-D representations of dental structures, soft tissues, and nerve pathways.
The information provided by cone beam CT is highly detailed and helps dentists evaluate jaw diseases and other periodontal disorders. Although they do not provide the full diagnosis, dentists can rely on this information to understand the underlying issues and study soft tissue structures.
Common Uses of the Procedure
Cone beam CT is mainly used for devising treatment for patients. As a result, they can be incorporated in surgical planning for impacted teeth, accurate placement of dental implants, detecting oral tumors, determining maxillofacial skeleton and orientation of the teeth and jaw, evaluating temporomandibular joint disorder, restorative procedures, and more.
Some procedures that require the study of sinuses, nerve canals, and the nasal cavity, can also use cone beam CT. Fortunately, there is no preparation required for a CT examination, so the equipment can be kept in the outpatient area too.
How Does the Procedure Work?
During the examination, the gantry (or c-arm) moves around the head in a circular motion while capturing details of the facial structure from different angles. These images are later then collated to come up with a 3-D representation of the oral cavity. You will find the x-ray source and the detector mounted on either side of the revolving arm. In a single motion, the detector can capture upto 200 images, which are later combined to come up with a 3-D picture.
You will be either asked to sit on the examination chair or lie down depending on the type of scanner being used. Your dentist or oral surgeon will help you position in front of the x-ray source so the images can capture the focus point accurately. The entire process of capturing the images takes less than a minute. In that time, the machine will capture detailed images of the entire mouth and any specific areas of the maxilla.
At Beaverton Oral Surgeons, we take great pride in providing the best care to our patients. We use the latest technology when studying, treating, and preventing oral complications. To learn more about cone beam CT, you can get in touch with our staff at (971) 249-8370.