How to choose the best intraoral camera for your dental practice

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Published: Monday, 23 November 2015 10:59 Written by 

Dental intraoral camera is a photographic device that uses a small wand to take digital pictures in the oral cavity for immediate viewing by dental staff and patient.
This method allows for viewing small areas that would be difficult to see without the camera's use.
Why should I have an intraoral camera?


• Patient education
The intraoral camera allows the patient to see what the dental professional sees inside his mouth. With the clear understanding of his dental conditions, he will be able to make treatment decisions with confidence. This also brings patient-dentist communication to a higher, more integrated level and elevates patient trust.
• Case documentation
The intraoral camera allows you to document and save the patient’s intraoral images and view them side by side to easily track the progress.
• Greater visibility
The intraoral camera allows you to zoom in on one tooth with 25 times magnification or gives you a video tour of the entire mouth. The images are displayed on a computer monitor, so you will be able to visualize problems such as broken filling, cracked teeth, plaque, cavities and excessive wear.
• Professional Communication
The intraoral camera allows for easy and better communication between dental professionals. For example, there is no better way to take a specialist consultation on a case than to send a good picture.

Things to look at when selecting an intraoral camera

• Quality of construction
A stronger intraoral camera tends to last longer, although plastic or steel construction might not make a difference to the captured image. Keep in mind that stronger construction may increase the overall weight of the camera and a lightweight camera might be easier to use.
• Depth of field
It is how much of the viewing area is in focus as you are moving the wand inside the mouth. Superior intraoral cameras require little or no focusing inside the mouth.
• Artifacts
By comparing what you see in the mouth under typical operatory lighting conditions with what appears on the monitor display.
• Resolution
It is the ability to recognize fine details. A higher resolution intraoral camera will usually capture images with better clarity.
• Software
It is important to know if the software or drivers that come with the camera will be compatible with your imaging software. Some camera are described as TWAIN compliant. This is a common imaging standard outside of dentistry allowing different cameras to work with different software applications.
• USB Connectivity
Most intraoral cameras are digital and an easy-to-use USB connection is needed. This easy connectivity allows you to take the camera from room to room.
• Capture Button
The capture button should be positioned where you can snap an image easily. Some intraoral cameras have a swipe function to capture the image, eliminating the need to push a button. This is excellent because pushing a button might move the camera and blur the image.
• Light Source
LEDs provide more than enough light for an intraoral image, therefore most USB intraoral cameras feature LED technology to light the subject.
• Focal distance
Many intraoral cameras allow for a change in focal distance to let you capture a full arch or even an extraoral shot of the patient.
Finally, most cameras come with a disposable plastic sleeve that is placed over the camera, which can be changed from one patient to another, also protecting it against moisture in the mouth. Therefore, there is no need to autoclave your camera.
The cost ranges from sub-$1000 to $3000.

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