What is a dental CT scan?
The main difference between a CT scan and a standard dental x-ray is that a CT scan gives us a 3D image. This means we can look around and inside the entire tooth, jawbone, and even your airway! They are important in helping us diagnose various dental conditions and aid in treatment planning.
Who might need a dental CT scan?
These are a few indications for getting a 3D scan:
Patients who need or have had bone grafting and plan on having dental implants placed
Patients who need wisdom teeth extraction and their teeth are positioned close to the important anatomical structures such as nerves
Patients who have had complications with root canals or need an evaluation of a tooth for a root canal treatment
Why is it important?
Knowing the exact shape and dimensions of the jaw bone helps us be very precise in dental implant surgery. In our office we are using surgical guides for implant placement, and obtaining a CT scan is an essential part for the guide planning and fabrication
Seeing exactly where an infection lies can give us information about whether a tooth is broken beyond repair, or what can be done to help it heal
Sometimes CT scan is necessary for root canal therapy to diagnose some accessory canals. Especially it is important for the back teeth (molars)
Knowing the exact shape of the roots and position of the important anatomical structures helps significantly reduce the risk of complications during wisdom teeth extractions
We can diagnose abnormal lesions that can indicate serious bone tumors and cysts
Where do I go to get a scan?
Instead of being referred to imaging centers, for the convenience of our patients we have recently installed a state-of-the-art Planmeca Promax CBCT in our dental office. It allows us to take both 2D digital radiographs such as panoramic x-rays, as well as 3D CT scans.