Technology has always been an important part of dentistry since Pierre Fauchard, the father of modern dentistry, pioneered new prosthodontic devices to replace missing teeth in the 17th century. Today, new digital technology currently helps dentists prevent, diagnose, and treat diseases. 3D scans and 3D printing also elevate patient care, says Dr. Frank Roach.
One digital imaging computer, the CEREC Omnicam, is inserted into the patient’s mouth and captures a continuous digital video impression scan at a rate of 18 per second.
“Our office uses the CEREC Omnicam and its software to translate the scan into 3D models,” says Dr. Frank Roach. “We then use its companion device, the CEREC MC XL milling machine, to create a crown from that feed. By using this technology, we can create crowns the same day,” says Dr. Frank Roach.
3D imaging also has revolutionized dental care, says Dr. Frank Roach. The painless technology allows for panoramic views of the teeth and supportive structures in the face within 10 seconds. The images are similar to those that might be obtained through a CT scan, but with much less radiation.
“A 3D panoramic view allows dentists to better understand the relationships between hard and soft tissues of the mouth,” says Dr. Frank Roach. “It allows us to diagnose certain problems and meticulously plan a patient’s treatment,” says Dr. Frank Roach. 3D printers can significantly reduce orthodontic models’ cost, democratizing dental care, says Dr. Frank Roach.
“Technology will continue to evolve, and its evolution will improve dental care,” says Dr. Frank Roach. “For example, a new smart toothbrush, which records a patient’s brushing habits and sends suggestions through an app, potentially will improve oral hygiene. Another example is a synthetic biomaterial that could allow a cavity to heal itself. The creation of this biomaterial is a joint project between Harvard University and the University of Nottingham and could potentially reduce the tooth deterioration that leads to root canals.”
About Dr. Frank Roach, Atlanta Dentist
Dr. Frank Roach has been practicing since 1998. He takes pride in staying at the head of his profession by using the latest techniques, technology, and materials. He is also an avid tennis player, private pilot, and proud owner of a 100-pound pit bull.