Sidekick - Volume 2, 2019 - 28

Moving Beyond Hygiene and Fillings

Imaging asessment to improve patient outcomes
The practice of dentistry has expanded beyond hygiene and
fillings - giving dentists new opportunities to improve
patient care. Many leading-edge practices are investing in 3D
CBCT technology to perform early screenings, leading to more
positive patient outcomes and keeping bigger issues at bay.
Cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) systems give dentists
a way to open a dialogue with patients, guiding them to better
oral health. "Keeping patients healthy is directly related to
outcome-driven processes," says Jay Barringer, an Equipment
Sales Specialist for Henry Schein. "Safe screening allows dentists
to find problems before the patient starts experiencing discomfort.
This allows for more comprehensive care. A lot of patients have
anxiety about the unknown. Today, dentists can show patients
exactly what's happening, provide several options, and help them
understand the implications of any given outcome. By visualizing
for patients what's happening, they can help patients get in front
of a problem. This way, they're not addressing it in an emergency
scenario."
"The benefits of 3D imaging are all about communicating
effectively with my patients and engaging them in their dental
care," says Dr. Bryan Couch of Complete Smiles Dentistry, a
state-of-the-art dental practice in Coppell, Texas. "When they
can see on the screen where the implant will go, they have a

greater comfort factor in the process. This has changed the patient
experience."
The 3D systems also take the guesswork out of performing
specialty treatments such as implants and orthodontics. CBCT
systems can rotate around the patient's head, capturing data using
a low-radiation X-ray beam. The CBCT can quickly produce a
three-dimensional image of the patient's teeth, jaw, neck, as well as
their ears, nose, and throat.
Using 3D dental imaging gives doctors greater confidence in
treatments such as endodontic diagnosis and dental abnormalities.
It also opens up the door to the placement of dental implants,
which can represent tremendous growth opportunities. Instead of
referring out diagnostic, implant, root canal, and cosmetic dentistry
work to specialists, dentists can now perform this work in-house.
This can increase profitability for the practice and add convenience
for their patients. "3D imaging gives us very predictable results,"
adds Dr. Couch. "I can see exactly how an implant needs to be
placed."
In addition, more dentists are taking a holistic view of the patient,
looking at the systemic link between dental care and overall
health. Airway consultations are a prime example of this. Airway is
a tremendous interest area in the dental field, which represents an
intriguing merging of medical and dental. To that end, 3D imaging
systems allow dentists
to visualize a patient's
airway to identify if
they have sleep-related
issues like sleep apnea.
They can then work in
partnership with a sleep
physician to identify the
right treatment for the
patient's sleep disorder.
It is important to do your
due diligence before
selecting a 3D dental
imaging system.
That is why many dentists
turn to Henry Schein.
The company works
with dental practices to
help identify how 3D will
impact them now and

28 | Sidekick | Vol. 2 2019



Sidekick - Volume 2, 2019

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