A cone beam computed tomography, or CBCT, is an advanced X-ray machine that rotates around a patient’s head to create 3D images of their teeth, jaw, soft tissues, and nerves. The advantage of a CBCT machine is its accuracy in pinpointing the location of an infection, abscess, tumor, cyst, fracture, or other problem. The images are so accurate that they can even show the precise orientation of a tooth’s roots! Your dentist may also use these images to create a surgical guide.
Since the image is so detailed, it also provides clarity that helps diagnose problems with your teeth and support structures within the jawbone. It can help our dentist identify the exact location of a nerve when you are experiencing tooth sensitivity or pain in a specific area. It can also help plan dental implant placement, so the implant is placed correctly and in the correct location. At Valenta Dental, we use this type of imaging not just to diagnose problems and plan treatment; it is also used to track the progress of your treatments and evaluate their effectiveness.
Since this type of imaging is more detailed than traditional X-rays, it is often recommended for those needing more advanced care. This may include patients experiencing extreme pain or having trouble identifying the source of pain in their teeth or jaw and those preparing for complex procedures such as dental implants.
In What Procedures Can a Cone Beam CT Be Used?
Dental Implant Planning
CBCT scans are commonly used to assess the quality and quantity of bone in the jaw to determine the feasibility of dental implant placement. It helps identify the optimal location for implant placement, avoiding vital structures like nerves or sinuses.
TMJ Disorder Diagnosis
CBCT scans can provide detailed images of the temporomandibular joint to evaluate the joint's structure, position, and abnormalities. It aids in diagnosing conditions such as joint degeneration, disc displacement, or bony abnormalities that may contribute to TMJ disorders.
CBCT scans can help orthodontists assess the alignment of teeth, identify impacted or supernumerary teeth, evaluate root positions, and determine the relationship between teeth and surrounding structures. This information aids in orthodontic treatment planning.
The Advantages of Cone Beam CT
Compared to traditional CT scans, Cone Beam CT eliminates radiation exposure to a patient while allowing the dentist to see a full 3D rendition of the patient’s teeth and jaw structure. The scan can be completed quickly and efficiently without patients needing to hold their breath or bite down on uncomfortable metal rods. The smaller size of the scanner allows treatment planning to be done faster and more economically.
CBCT scans assist in diagnosing and assessing various oral and maxillofacial pathologies, including tumors, cysts, abscesses, and other abnormal lesions. For the best dental care tailored to your unique needs, visit Valenta Dental at 1838 Dunlap Ave, Marinette, WI 54143, or call (715) 735-5626.