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Planmeca Ultra Low Dose

Cone Beam 3D Imaging

Smile Always Dental is proud to introduce the newest technology addition to our practice in Parker, CO, our 3D Cone Beam Computer Tomography imaging! This is an incredible machine which is transforming dental care which is provided around the county and we wanted to ensure our patients here in Parker had access to receive amazing care using the revolutionary technology this imaging provides.

What can I expect with the scan?

The scan will be incorporated into your normal dental visits or we can make a special 15 minute appointment to get the scan, whichever works best with your schedule. The scan is completed very quickly, within seconds. Although the scan is extremely quick, it does not compromise on quality. With our state of the art machine we are able to quickly assess your dental needs, discuss ideal treatment and get you back to enjoying your day in less time than you may expect!

The scan requires no special preparation on your part. When the certified tech takes the scan, you should remove any metal objects to minimize blocked views of important anatomy. This includes jewelry, eyeglasses, piercings, hairpins, hearing aids and all removable dental work (ie: dentures or partials.) To aid in the convenience of the scan, you may want to leave things like jewelry at home but please do bring any removable dental prosthetics as the dentist will need to examine them for your dental exam. You will wear a lead vest during the scan. Please do let the team know if there is a possibility you are pregnant before the scan is taken.

You will stand comfortably in front of the machine holding special handles, and the dental team will position you so that the area which needs to be imaged is ideally positioned in the frame. Then you will be asked to remain very still while the image is taken. During the imaging time, the tech will leave the room and initiate the scan which will have the source and detector revolve around you at a 360 degree turn or less. A full mouth scan takes less than 30 seconds, and smaller more focused images take less than 10 seconds.

Jaw Scan

Is the scan uncomfortable?

The scan is completely painless. You will not experience any pain and you will be able to return back to your normal activities as soon as the exam is complete. The machine allows you to stand comfortably during the entire experience. For patients with disabilities or difficulty standing, the scan can also be completed sitting in a wheelchair or regular chair.

Who interprets the results of the scan?

Preview LightboxAfter taking the image, the dentist will be able to review the image for immediate feedback. Your doctor will also take additional time after you have left the office to sit with the exam in detail and review each image taken for any abnormalities, signs of disease or disfunction. She will then call you if any additional items are found. In rare instances, the doctor may also recommend to have your scan sent to a specialist or radiologist to review any particular items found. All details of the scan can also be relayed to any referring specialists you have as well.  You also have the option to opt in to have your scan sent to a radiologist who can review for abnormalities in extreme detail. If this is something you are interested in, please reach out to your dentist and let him or her know.

How does the technology of a Cone Beam CT work?

When you take a photograph with a camera, visible light captured in the camera forms an image on either the traditional photo film or a digital camera senor. All dental images work in a similar manner (2D or 3D). X-rays are a form of energy on the electromagnetic spectrum, just like visible light.  The x-rays created and emitted by dental imaging machines land on a digital sensor and create an image just like your photograph. X-rays differ from the visible light captured by your camera in that they can go through bone and soft tissue instead of reflecting off of it. So instead of a picture of your face, we get a picture of the anatomy beneath the surface. X-rays have a varying degree of absorption, meaning they are absorbed more by bone than soft tissue. That varying degree of absorption allows your dentist to see things like anatomical structure, cavities and bone loss.

2D images are limited in what they can show. They show a single 2D snapshot of the mouth and teeth which means they are limited to a single perspective. This is where 3D technology comes in. With a 3D image we are able to spin that image around, see where teeth are positioned relative to bone and take a look at anatomy from the inside of your mouth or skull.

The 3D image is designed similar to a “flip-book” – a moving picture book made up of a series of pictures. When you flip though the book, you can see the animation behind it. The 3D imaging takes slices (many different images) and lines them up next to each other to show your dentist an “animated” view of your body.

The 3D CBCT using a rotating arm that moves around your head and the scanner takes over 600 images in a minute and then a powerful computer processes these images, stiches them together and create a virtual model identical to your head and neck area. The Planmeca ProMax 3D, the machine in our office, takes this one step further. It uses SCARA (Selective Compliant Robotic Arm Technology) to deliver more flexibility in the imaging. Since the arm that rotates in this machine has more flexibility, we can see more anatomy while using less radiation! It also uses Automatic Cervical Vertebrae (ACV) to decrease the shadow of the vertebrae to allow us to see important anatomy more clearly and has the ability to use  Automatic Exposure Control (AEC) to measure the patient’s size and body to automatically customize exposure values. We can see everything from your jaw joint to airway, and everything in between, while completely minimizing radiation exposure to our patients! That 3D rendition can then be spliced, rotated 360 and flipped around to see what needs to be seen, and manipulated in many different ways –  without surgery! Before what we were unable to see is now available with ZERO discomfort to the patient!  It’s a miracle of modern medicine and it is at your fingertips in Parker, CO at Smile Always Dental!

Superimposed CBCT & 3D Model of Upper Jaw

How does this scan help me and my family receive better care?

You may have heard the quote “better information equals better results.” This imaging technology we invested in to provide better care for you and your loved ones does exactly that! It helps us see important anatomy or get a better view of the disease that is causing you dental pain. For our patients, having this imaging technology can reduce the need for more invasive procedures, decrease treatment time and allow us to prepare for more reliable and better outcomes.

In addition to the amazing 3D technology, it also allows our office to take panographic or full jaw images which show us things like jaw fractures, bone cancer, and tooth and bone infections. We can also now take bitewing images for those who cannot tolerate the smaller more traditional sensors which may pinch the mouth.

The CBCT is used for many dental procedures and can help us find difficult to locate nerves in a root canal, determine if you have enough bone for an implant and even to see if a nerve or sinus will be in the area of treatment for a surgery. With a clear view of all anatomy, CBCTs allow us to plan customized treatment which preserves your nerve endings and avoids pain and complications. It allows us to speed up your healing and provide you with a more predictable experience when it comes to complex surgery.

I worry about radiation for my family.
How does this machine work to minimize radiation exposure?

Rest assured, at Smile Always, we take radiation exposure very seriously. This is why we have invested in special radiographs which provide less than 70% of the radiation of traditional xrays. You get more radiation playing a round of golf in the Colorado sun than in a year’s worth of preventative xrays at our office.

The CBCT machine we invested in is the industry leader in minimizing radiation exposure and is a safe, accurate and effective technology for helping provide care. The Planmeca Promax 3D features a special pediatric or child mode to reduce exposure and minimize dose for our younger patients. The machine also comes with a special and proprietary Planmeca Ultra Low Dose™ imaging protocol that enables our office to take 3D imaging with an even lower patient radiation dose than standard 2D panoramic imaging with the simple click of a button!

What procedures is the Cone Beam 3D used for?

  • Dental implants – the 3D image allows us to see if there are defects in the bone which may cause implant failure, evaluate bone dentistry, assess need for bone grafting and avoid vital anatomy like your nerves or sinuses. 3D images are standard of care for placing an implant and implants should never be placed without taking this image to protect the patient.
  • Surgical planning for extracting wisdom teeth or other impacted teeth.
  • Assessing if a patient has jaw joint or TMJ dysfunction
  • Evaluating the teeth, bones, nerves and sinuses for signs of infection or sources of persistent dental pain.
  • Diagnosing, measuring, monitoring and referring head, neck and jaw tumors.
  • Assessing tooth relationships and orientation for more optimal dental treatment planning.
  • Acquiring accurate information with regard to the position of teeth before starting orthodontic treatment or getting braces.
  • Finding canals which are calcified or difficult to see allowing for a better prognosis when completing root canals and other intricate procedures.
  • Diagnosis and treatment of snoring or sleep apnea by imaging the tissues of the nose, throat and airway to diagnose this dangerous and potentially life threatening condition using Cone Beam Volumetric Technology.
  • Much, much more!

Bill Gates wrote a visionary book in 1999 called Business at the Speed of Thought: Using a Digital Nervous System. He states in the first chapter of that book ““I have a simple but strong belief. The most meaningful way to differentiate your company from your competition, the best way to put distance between you and the crowd, is to do an outstanding job with information. How you gather, manage and use information will determine whether you win or lose.” 3D imaging has changed the way dentistry as an industry collects and using diagnostic information to provide more predictable results. This cutting edge technology is quickly becoming the gold standard of care and in a matter of seconds completely transforms the care that we as your dental health advocates can provide. But this technology is still rare in dental offices and can only be found in a select few offices across the country. But here, in Parker, CO, it is at your fingertips. The care that you expect for you and your family is possible here at Smile Always Dental!

Dr. Jyothi, located in Parker, CO, is a general and family dentist who was voted top ten in the country by the American Dental Association! She serves patients from Parker, Aurora, Denver, Castle Pines, Castle Rock, Greenwood Village, Highlands Ranch, Englewood, and Lonetree, CO and other neighboring communities. We are looking forward to welcoming you to our office and encourage you to schedule your appointment today!

Have Questions?

Looking for a family Parker dentist that has the experience you want with the care and compassion you deserve, look no further than Smile Always. Our staff will create an individualized treatment plan to help you achieve optimal oral health. Whether it’s a routine checkup or an emergency visit, we are here to serve you. Our state-of-the-art office has the highest-quality equipment to provide the best family dentistry services possible. Contact us today for an appointment and create the change you’ve always desired. Simply call or text at our direct line or fill out this form to have our office reach out with options.

(303) 243-5110

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10521 S. Parker Rd. Suite E, Parker, CO 80134


Mon-Tue: 9:00am - 6:00pm

Wed-Thu: 7:00am - 4:00pm

Friday: 8:00am - 5:00pm

Saturday: 8:00am - 2:00pm

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