Digital Dentistry

Digital dentistry refers to the computer-based technology that we use to examine, diagnose, and treat your mouth.

Types of Digital Dentistry Used Today

You may be aware of digital technology influencing the way we interact with you.  We routinely use it to communicate with you between appointments with emails and SMS messaging. 

Digital technology is also changing other aspects of your dental care – from the moment you check in to the assessment of your oral health, all the way through to the diagnosis and treatment of any oral health condition.  Some digital tools we may use during your appointments include:

  • Intraoral cameras
  • 3D Printing (used by our laboratories to make dental appliances and surgical guides)
  • Electric and surgical/implant handpieces
  • Photography (extraoral and intraoral)
  • Practice record management software — including digital patient education
  • Digital X-rays

Intraoral scanning

Do you remember having a mouthguard or other dental appliance made?  The soft, gummy substance (impression material) used to take a mould of your teeth is not often enjoyable to have in your mouth and the taste is sometimes unpleasant.  These days, depending on the type of device being made, we can use a scanner to make a virtual 3D digital image of your mouth using an intraoral scanner.  Our dental technicians can use this image to design and fabricate custom-made prosthetics such as crowns, bridges, occlusal splints and Mandibular Advancement Splints.

Intraoral cameras

Small cameras are sometimes used to examine the inside of your mouth as they give your dentist the benefit of magnification.  By making any area of the mouth appear extra-large on one of our computer screens, we are better able to identify any potential issues that need to be addressed.

Another benefit is that you can see what we do!  This can help you to understand any concerns your dentist may have and assist you in improving your oral hygiene.

Digital X-Rays

X-rays have long been used in dental offices to examine and diagnose areas of the mouth that we cannot see by just looking.  Traditional x-rays are slow, expensive, and needed to be physically delivered to specialists (where necessary). Digital radiography is more efficient as the images are available immediately, can be stored on a server, and can be shared easily.

Information management

In the past, dental records were stored as hard copies in locked filing cabinets.  Dental offices (including Dental on Lawrence) have moved to a digital format to improve scheduling, workflow, and the necessary sharing of information.  Not only does this provide a more efficient working environment but it also allows you, the patient, to have better control over your dental appointments, treatments, and records.

Digital Dental Care at Home

Did you know that you can now get electric toothbrushes that work in conjunction with your smart devices?  These toothbrushes and related apps work together to ensure that you are brushing for the correct length of time, in the appropriate area of your mouth, using the optimum amount of pressure. 

Of course, these extra tools are not essential for good oral care, but they certainly can help you clean thoroughly, and are a great way to engage kids.