October 9, 2023

How Dental Technology Has Changed in the Last 50 Years

Over the last 50 years, remarkable advancements in dental technology have transformed the landscape of oral healthcare. The era characterized by anxiety-ridden and manually intensive dental practices has now evolved into a period marked by high precision, comfort, efficiency, and overall improved patient experience. This article delves into some of the significant technological advancements seen in the realm of dentistry in the past 50 years.

Digital X-rays

Traditional X-rays have been replaced with digital X-rays, marking a significant evolution in dental technology. Digital X-rays use digital sensors instead of traditional photographic films, reducing the radiation exposure by up to 90%. This technology provides immediate imaging available for interpretation, thus, improving efficiency and facilitating earlier diagnosis and treatment. 

Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing (CAD/CAM)

CAD/CAM technology has revolutionized the manufacturing process of dental prosthetics. It involves the use of high-quality imaging to create a 3D model of the tooth, which is then replicated using ceramic blocks within the dental clinic. This innovation has significantly reduced the waiting period associated with the creation of crowns, delivering instant results and precision.

Laser Technology

The advent of laser technology has led to more comfortable and efficient dental procedures. Lasers can be used in a variety of applications, from reducing the noise when having a filling done to reducing discomfort during teeth cleanings to performing minimally invasive surgeries. They offer precise cutting, reduced post-operative pain, and quicker healing times. Laser technology is also used for teeth whitening, significantly reducing the time spent in the dental chair.

Digital Impressions

Traditional dental impressions were messy, uncomfortable, and time-consuming. However, the introduction of digital scanning devices has transformed this process. These devices can create highly accurate 3D digital models of a patient's teeth. Digital impressions are more comfortable, and faster, and facilitate better communication between the dentist and the lab.

Dental Implants and 3D Printing

50 years ago, options for replacing lost teeth were limited. However, dental implants have now become a widespread solution, providing a permanent substitute that looks and feels like natural teeth. Advances in 3D printing have made the production of custom implants and other dental appliances more accessible and accurate.

Surgical Microscopes

Surgical microscopes are an indispensable tool in modern dentistry, offering significant enhancement to the dentist's field of view during procedures. This magnification allows for precision during intricate procedures, ensuring effective treatment and reducing the likelihood of complications.

The use of surgical microscopes has extended to numerous dental disciplines including endodontics, periodontics, implantology, and restorative dentistry. They allow dentists to illuminate difficult-to-see areas, greatly improving diagnostics and treatment. Moreover, the use of this technology contributes to patient education— the procedures can often be recorded and shown to the patients, offering a visual explanation of what is being done and thereby increasing patient understanding and comfort.

Finding a Dentist Who Uses Modern Dental Technology

The last 50 years have marked an incredible leap in dental technology, transforming the way dental professionals diagnose, treat, and prevent oral diseases with greater precision and efficiency. If you're considering improving your dental health, selecting a technology-forward dentist is a prudent decision. 

At Pearl Street Dental, we understand the benefits that advanced technology can provide with regard to better patient care. That’s why we invest in new technologies and techniques such as digital lasers and surgical microscopes that provide a greater value to our patients. Not only do they help to improve the accuracy of diagnoses and treatments, but they also help to increase patient comfort and reduce recovery time.

If you’re looking for a dentist in Boulder and would like to learn more about the types of advanced technology Pearl Street Dental uses, please give us a call or visit our website. To experience for yourself how modern technology can improve your overall dental experience, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with us.