I'm using a new technology that finds hidden cavities before they become major problems. It's the Kavo DIAGNOdent pen. It's a good example of high tech dentistry.
Kavo explains how the cavity detector pen works:
"The DIAGNOdent hand-held caries detection operates at a wavelength of 655 nm. At this specific wavelength, clean healthy tooth structure exhibits little or no fluorescence, resulting in very low scale readings on the display.
However, carious tooth structure will exhibit fluorescence, proportionate to the degree of caries, resulting in elevated scale readings on the display of the DIAGNOdent, enabling the practitioner to provide a more accurate dental caries treatment plan.
An audio signal allows the operator to hear changes in the scale values. This enables the focus to be on the patient, not solely on the device."
You see, fluoridation of water and toothpaste has many benefits, but one downside is that tooth enamel is harder. Thus, cavity-causing bacteria is now sneaking deep down below the tooth surface, where it's much more difficult to detect.
We end up with fewer cavities, but the cavities that do occur are more secretive. They can do a lot more damage in their clandestine condition. By the time we can detect them with old fashioned methods, a lot of trouble has already been created.
Not anymore. With the Kavo DIAGNOdent cavity detector, we can find these hidden cavities and make better decisions about stained grooves in teeth. You get dental diagnostics that are far more accurate.
Kavo states: "Dentists often experience anxiety when attempting to diagnose the phenomenon known as hidden caries. A suspicious-looking tooth presents a treatment dilemma for dentists. Should the tooth be opened up? What if no caries is found? Should the tooth just be watched, or does that give caries more time to destroy the tooth's surface?"
With the high tech DIAGNOdent tool, we don't have to probe and scratch at your teeth to look for cavities, which for many patients was uncomfortable. All we do is insert the DIAGNOdent pen gently into your mouth, scan the teeth, and we're done.
No x-rays are needed in this process.
It's fast. It's safe. And it's extremely effective. The precision and reliability of cavity detection has reached a whole new level of sophistication.
Kavo states: "In a study conducted by Dr. Lussi of Berne University, Switzerland, general practitioners correctly diagnosed hidden fissure areas by visual inspection in only 57% of all cases. The same group achieved an impressive success rate of 90% with the DIAGNOdent. In fact, DIAGNOdent was far more accurate than any other method in the study including bitewing X-rays."
Early detection of cavities is an enormous benefit for patients, reducing future costs and helping to preserve teeth. The absolute last thing we want to do is pull a tooth out. Any dentist who is eager to extract a tooth is a dentist you may need to worry about. Only in extreme cases should a tooth be removed.
Kavo DIAGNOdent cavity detection can mean you keep more of your teeth. Think about how great that is.
To the best of my knowledge, and I have searched on Google for "kavo diagnodent dentists peoria il" (you can do this, too), I am one of the only dentists in the Peoria area who is using this new technology. As best I can determine, there are only a few of us using it currently.
Visiting a dentist can be somewhat uncomfortable for some people. I try my best to use patient-centered, high tech, and affordable procedures that result in the best smile you've ever had.