3D Imaging

3D dental imaging represents a significant advancement in traditional dental imaging by adding an extra dimension to the picture. Dentists now have the capability to capture 3D X-rays, which provide a nearly limitless range of perspectives and incredibly detailed views of the structures in your mouth, face, and head.

Whether you're at the beginning of treatment or assessing the outcomes of a procedure, 3D imaging serves as an invaluable tool for your dental health.

In contrast to conventional X-rays, the 3D imaging system can generate both 2D and 3D images and includes scans of not only bones and teeth but also your soft tissues. Dentists can zoom in on the scan, rotate it, observe it from various angles, and even examine scans at different depths. This technology enables visualization of your teeth, roots, gums, bones, nerves, and airways while revealing the interrelationships among these structures.

What Is 3D Dental Imaging?

3D dental imaging is often known as cone beam CT scanning, and this technology is what enables these scans to be performed. The term "cone beam" originates from the specific cone shape of the invisible X-ray beam emitted by the scanner. This machine creates an image of your head from numerous angles by projecting the beam at various directions. These perspectives are then combined to produce a comprehensive 3D representation.

Types of 3D Imaging

The versatility of the images produced by a 3D X-ray machine allows it to be useful for a wide range of treatments and dental conditions. 3D dental imaging is applicable in various fields, including endodontics (root canals), oral surgery, orthodontics, prosthodontics, sleep apnea, TMJ disorders, and more. Since these images encompass your entire mouth and even your entire head, they offer a comprehensive view of how your teeth are positioned in relation to each other, simplifying the process of developing precise treatment plans for tasks such as teeth straightening or replacement.

3D Dental Scan Is Painless

Getting a 3D dental scan is completely painless, takes only a few minutes total & requires no preparation beforehand. The cone beam CT scanner is mounted on an arm that rotates around your head while you stand or sit under it. You will be asked to place your chin on a special platform & the entire scanner can be raised or lowered to a height that is comfortable for you. Your only task during the scanning process is to hold as still as possible. The scan usually lasts less than half a minute.

  • 3D x-ray doesn’t require you to bite down on a sensor like bite-wing x-rays, but you may be asked to bite down on a small disposable tab to help ensure alignment.
  • To get an accurate image, your face must be centered & your mouth level.
  • A brace or strap may be used to keep your head still.
  • The team member carrying out the scan will ensure you’re positioned properly before performing the scan.
3D Imaging Emits Less Radiation

Dental cone beam CT machines are designed to emit significantly less radiation compared to traditional CT scans and conventional film X-rays, ensuring that your exposure is both brief and minimal. Additionally, if you prefer, you can be draped with a lead vest for added protection during the scan.

It's crucial for pregnant women to inform their dentist about their pregnancy status before undergoing a 3D X-ray or any type of X-ray. This allows the dental team to take appropriate precautions and make informed decisions about the necessity of the X-ray and how to minimize radiation exposure during the procedure.

3D Dental Imaging Is Instantaneous

The 3D x-ray scanner creates a 3D digital image instantaneously, meaning there's no waiting for film to develop. The fact that the images are digital also makes it very easy to share your scans with any specialist dentists who may be involved in your care, such as an orthodontist or a prosthodontist. We're proud to offer this advanced technology because it allows us to provide every patient with more accurate, efficient & successful dental care.