Paxton, MA dentist uses cone beam CT scans for precise diagnostics and treatment planning
Dental technologies have rapidly advanced in recent years, making revolutionary changes in how we perform nearly every aspect of your care. Imaging technologies are no exception. At Paxton Dental Care, Dr. Scott Siemen has invested in state-of-the-art equipment to provide safer and more effective care for Paxton, MA area patients, including a cone beam CT scan machine that provides in-depth, precise images that can be used for a variety of diagnostic and treatment planning purposes.
What is a cone beam CT scan and how is it different from traditional dental x-rays?
A cone beam CT (computed tomography) scanner is a specialized type of imaging machine. You have likely heard of CT scans in a medical context before – they use fan-shaped x-ray beams to take images of a variety of structures in the body. A cone beam CT scan is different than a traditional CT scan in that it uses cone-shaped beams of radiation, is smaller, and exposes the patient to a lower amount of radiation. It takes dental CT scans that provide much more detailed, 3-dimensional images than a standard 2-dimensional x-ray.
While 2D x-rays are very useful in several circumstances, such as monitoring for cavities or other issues with your teeth. However, traditional x-rays are limited to one view of the mouth and though there are many different types of structures in your mouth, jaw, and neck area, traditional x-rays can only show some of these structures (such as your bone and teeth).Cone beam CT scans, on the other hand, provide extremely detailed images of not just the teeth and bone, but also your gums, nerves, and other soft tissues. In addition, Dr. Siemen can use cone beam CT images to determine your bone density, which is important in planning out certain treatments such as dental implants. The difference in cone beam CT scans versus traditional x-rays is like viewing a flipbook versus a single page in the book – a cone beam CT scan provides a much more thorough view of the overall “story.”
Benefits of cone beam CT scans in your dental care
Cone beam dental tomography offers many benefits for patients and enables Dr. Siemen to provide more accurate, high-quality care. Using a cone beam CT scan for your teeth, soft tissues, and other structures in your mouth, Dr. Siemen can:
- Diagnose infections in your teeth
- Evaluate the health of your nasal cavity and sinuses, gums, and other tissues
- Diagnose TMJ disorder
- Take very precise measurements to be used planning out your care, such as creating dental appliances or planning out the placement of dental implants
- Planning other dental procedures, such as oral surgery
- Diagnose issues with your airway, such as obstructive sleep apnea
- Detect potentially cancerous lesions or other abnormalities
Getting a cone beam CT scan
In addition to the many benefits in your care planning that dental cone beam CT scans provide, they are quick and easy to take! We will ask you to remove any glasses, jewelry, hair pins, dentures, or hearing aids prior to taking the images. In addition, it is essential that you inform us if you are pregnant or might be pregnant. When we are ready to take the scan, you just sit there comfortably while the scanner moves around your head – and even better, the scanning process takes less than a minute!
Dental cone beam CT scans are just one of the many technologies that Dr. Siemen uses at Paxton Dental Care to help his patients achieve their best oral health – in fact, Paxton Dental Care is one of the only dental practices in the area that are equipped with this technology! To schedule your appointment, call our Paxton, MA office today at (508) 557-2400.