Digital photography allows us to take photos of your teeth and mouth and immediately share them during the appointment to further elaborate on any issues or explain treatment plans. Using these images, we can point out any concerns we may have in order to prevent future issues or even demonstrate what is being done well. It is meant to be a quick and painless procedure.
Digital and intraoral photography may not be necessary at every visit. It is, however, a useful tool our team will often implement to ensure our patients have a full examination experience and we will typically have a conversation with you about the benefits of the procedure before conducting it.
What to Expect
Digital and intraoral photography is usually done during an examination as an additional means of inspection and diagnosis. It allows us to see beyond the visual of an initial evaluation of the surface, to further inspect your teeth, bones, gums, other soft and hard tissues, and more. Unlike x-rays, it also allows us to keep records of your oral cavity in color. Our office will use a variety of devices to take digital photos, including what are referred to as intraoral cameras.
Intraoral cameras are pen-shaped devices that we use to capture images of your teeth and gums through angles that would otherwise be difficult to achieve. These images can be instantly displayed on one of our computer screens for us to reference and discuss with you. The device functions similarly to a camera and may require certain angles, stillness, and appropriate lighting. It’s possible we will also use mirrors, retractors, and other tools to safely pull the gums and soft tissue aside to give us better viewpoints. Again, the entire process is completely safe and pain-free, so it’s important to communicate with us if you have any concerns.
Importance of Digital and Intraoral Photography
Digital photography is useful for a number of reasons including documentation, a means to accurately record color rendition of both soft and hard tissue detail and have high-quality images. Documentation is essential to keep proper medical records, show the transitionary period between treatments, and act as future diagnostic reference. It’s crucial for our professionals to have a record of the colors that we perceive during patient examination. With our technology, photos taken should precisely reproduce the color of any gingivae, oral mucosa, teeth, and any prostheses as they appear in the mouth. This lets us to correctly diagnose and discuss any issues or preventative measures with you.
Accurate color for soft and hard tissue is essential for our professionals to differentiate between healthy and diseased tissues and for noting any white patches, inflammation, ulceration, burns, laceration, carcinoma, and more. For hard tissue, we can correctly gauge any enamel translucency, erosion, abrasion, and decay. Exact coloration may be necessary for such treatments as matching the color of a prosthesis with its natural surroundings. Incorrect colors can lead to the misinterpretation or complete unawareness of potentially serious issues.
If you have any questions about our staff’s use of digital and intraoral photography, please don’t hesitate to contact us!