The benefits of introducing a dental microscope to the dental surgery
Rapid developments in technology have allowed dentistry to move forward at an astonishing rate. One of the most prominent developments has been the integration of the dental microscope across many different areas of the profession. It has revolutionised the way that treatment is performed, notably in the field of endodontics. The use of a microscope not only quickens endodontic work, it also makes it simpler. Visualisation is essential for providing patients with effective treatment and during a course of root canal treatment most of the procedure is performed within the tooth. Restrictive access makes visualisation difficult, so being able to view exactly what is being done is crucial, and a dental microscope makes this possible.
However, the dental microscope is becoming associated with other parts of dentistry, including cosmetic and even general dentistry. The use of a dental microscope creates new opportunities for a dental practice. Not only does it offer significantly improved visualisation through familiar procedures, it also provides the opportunity to branch out in to new areas, broadening the repertoire of a dental practice. Being able to offer an array of dental disciplines will provide a practice with a significant advantage over competitors.
A microscope is a substantial investment for a dental practice and making the decision of which model to buy should be carefully considered. There are many qualities that should be contemplated by a potential buyer, the most predominant being the quality of the magnification. More advanced microscopes will offer interchangeable lenses, eyepieces for those with prescription glasses and apochromatic technology to avoid chromatic aberration. Filters are also an important feature as they improve the visibility of tissue structures and prevent premature curing. A microscope with a motorised zoom system allows for a quick change of focus during procedures. A dentist using the microscope primarily for endodontics, will find a five-step magnification changer to be a key attribute as it will allow an instant switch from a close-up detailed view to an overview of the tooth. However, superb magnification is not everything, excellent illumination is also required to get the most out of a microscope. A xenon light source provides outstanding depth orientation and ensures that all of the hard to reach places in the dental cavity are visible with perfect clarity.
As with many modern dental products, ergonomics play a key part. The risk of developing an RSI or RMI is becoming more acknowledged in dentistry and counteracting this with ergonomics has become a widespread solution. The design of many modern dental microscopes takes this into consideration. A good dental microscope should allow its user to sit upright, in a relaxed position throughout treatment. This will help to prevent the development of back and neck problems. Comfort during use is not exclusive to keeping a healthy posture, the handling of the microscope is also important. A microscope with a MORA (Mechanical Optical Rotating Assembly) interface allows for smooth manoeuvring of the unit, preventing the user from straining themselves by exerting excessive physical force. This can be amplified by advanced ergonomic features such as Free Float Magnetic Systems, which will provide an effortless manipulation of the microscope for precise positioning.
Some modern dental microscopes are now are able to incorporate an extensive assortment of extra features that will significantly enhance performance and documentation. For instance, it is now possible to incorporate an integral HD camera or to connect a video or digital SLR camera to the microscope. An image or video can say more than words, so this breaks down the language barrier between patient and clinician during a consultation, making the whole process quick and simple. Some dental microscopes can even be connected to a monitor, which will allow live streaming of a procedure to an audience. Broadcasting the clear visualisations on a monitor will certainly benefit a training environment.
The elegant design and abundance of advanced features that the modern dental microscope offers are making it a necessity for contemporary dentistry. Not only has it become an essential tool in the practice of endodontics, it is also lending itself to other forms of the profession. Of course, it is important to remember that having the right knowledge will significantly expand the possibilities that an advanced dental microscope can present. As a dental microscope is quite a significant investment for a practice, it is important to be sure that it is bought from a reputable manufacturer. Carl Zeiss is one of the leading names in high quality visualisation and its range of dental microscopes can be bought exclusively from Nuview in the UK. The Carl Zeiss OPMI® Pico and OPMI® PROergo® dental microscopes incorporate many of the features that make the dental microscope such an indispensible piece of equipment. In the right hands a microscope can be utilised to achieve exceptional clinical results in any area of dentistry.