Today is the 47th anniversary of the moon landing. Just think what has happened in the world over those past years. Our world revolves around dentistry. The change in dentistry in just fifteen years has been incredible. Here are some of the major advancements that we have seen in the world of dental care:
- Digital x rays- in the past x rays would have to be developed in a dark room or processed taking more than ten minutes. Today, scanning of phosphor plates takes seven seconds or images are available immediately with sensors.
- Lasers- laser dentistry is still relatively new but an major part of dentistry in the future. Lasers can disinfect, aid regeneration, aid healing, remove decay, sterilise gum pockets and much more.
- Adhesive dentistry- long gone are the days of cutting teeth heavily to fill them with mercury containing amalgam fillings. MI dentistry is now the in thing with adhesive technology and composite bonding.
- Prevention- one of the best pieces of advice is prevention, prevention, prevention. Most disease can be avoided with sound home care techniques. Early decay can be reversed and gum disease can be treated in part at home.
- Intra oral cameras- seeing is believing. In the past you would simply have to take the dentist at his word. Now you can see everything in your mouth in great detail. Communication is the key to success.
- Microscopes and magnification- even 2.5 x magnification allows us to see in great detail. Microscopes are now used by endodontists on a regular basis. In fact, we would not refer to one without a microscope.
- Super seals- Biodentine is a new 'super seal' which helps to allow pulpal healing rather than the dreaded root canal. In the past deep decay resulted in root canal treatment in almost every case. Now, we have a 70% success chance of avoiding this.
- Implant dentistry- dental implants are the gold standard in replacing teeth. The world of implant dentistry has evolved at an amazing rate and we can now predictably place implants due to the great advancement in CT scanning technology.
- CT scans- these allow 3-D images of the hard tissue structures of the mouth to allow planning in great detail. We can plan dental implant treatment in great detail without having the patient present. Stents can be made to allow us to place the implants in the correct position and avoid anatomical structures.
- CAD-CAM and intra oral scanning- we now have the ability to take scans of your teeth and gums without impressions. These can be e mailed to the laboratory for the fabrication of crowns, bridges, implant work, study models, orthodontic appliances and much more.
We could go on and on! Ask your dentist which of these advancements they have adopted and seek treatment that is right for you. After all, we do not live in 1969!