One crucial tool that dentists use in examining the mouth, diagnosing, and treating dental problems is the intra-oral camera. This hand-held device is shaped like an oversized pen and is fitted with a video camera used to take pictures of your teeth (up to 25x magnification). It is covered with a disposable plastic to prevent contamination, and the photographs taken of your teeth are projected on a screen for you to see.
If you want, you can request a video tour of your mouth where you will be shown the current condition of your teeth; this includes showing the current plaque, worn teeth decay, etc. that lives in your mouth. The pictures of your teeth will either be printed or saved to your file, and if you want you can go home with a copy.
A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words
Before the emergence of the intra-oral camera, it was difficult for patients to understand issues like dental decay and periodontal disease. But with intra-oral cameras, patients can even see what these things look like inside their mouth.
Benefits of an Intra-Oral Camera
- By showing the patient precisely what the dentist is seeing, the intra-oral camera makes the patient feel like they are playing a part in their treatment.
- It is easier to ask questions and understand the explanations given to you by the dentist when you can see what is discussed.
- By showing you first hand the state of your oral health, patients will be willing to take the crucial step in maintaining good oral hygiene.
- Early stages of gum diseases and cavities can be detected using these cameras.
- By capturing and storing images over time, the progress of your treatment or changes in your oral health can be monitored.
- The captured images could serve as proof to collect your health insurance.