LOUPES AND HEADLIGHT
During your dental appointment, Dr. Nomura uses “loupes,” which are high magnification eyeglasses to visualize the oral cavity in great detail. She also has an attached LED headlamp to brightly illuminate her field of vision without the need for an overhead lamp. These visual tools allow Dr. Nomura to examine and diagnose your teeth and gums precisely and to ensure a precise evaluation of all dental restorations.
Our office uses both intraoral and panoramic digital radiography to aid in the diagnosis of our patients’ oral health. Although all dental radiographs require very low doses of radiation, digital radiographs use 70% less radiation per exposure than the older film technology. We also protect our patients with a lead apron, which shields the body from any scattered radiation. And, by eliminating the need for the toxic chemicals used to process x-ray films, we also benefit the environment.
Digital technology also allows us to view enlarged x-ray images on our computer monitor within seconds. There is no more waiting for films to be processed, and Dr. Nomura can review any significant radiographic findings with the patient, highlighting her observations on the computer monitor. We want our patients to be fully informed and involved in decisions regarding their dental treatment plan.
We have utilized a digital intraoral camera for several years, but now we have a state-of-the-art handheld camera that delivers extremely clear close-up photographs. Our patients can actually see the fracture lines, leaky fillings, or decay that require treatment. By reviewing these enlarged images on the computer monitor, Dr. Nomura likes to involve patients in a discussion of any abnormalities and of the recommended treatments, and she can also document procedures with “before, during, and after” images.
Since switching to digital records over ten years ago, we have minimized our use of paper products and can offer our patients a more efficient way to store their private health records. Since we no longer need to search for a patient “chart,” there is instant access to scheduling, notes, x-rays and treatment plans. We can also transfer records electronically and communicate through the use of secure management systems.