Endodontics located in Alexandria, Falls Church, & Arlington, VA
When a traditional X-ray image simply doesn’t provide enough detail of the condition of your mouth, your endodontist may perform 3D imaging. Dominion Endodontics offers 3D imaging to patients in Alexandria, Falls Church, and Arlington, Virginia. To schedule an appointment, use the online form or call the location nearest you today.
3D Imaging Q & A
What is 3D imaging?
Cone beam 3D imaging combines CT scans with dental panoramic X-rays to create three-dimensional radiograph images rather than the two-dimensional images produced by traditional dental X-rays.
The 3D images give dentists and endodontists an improved look at your teeth, jawbone, sinuses, and large nerve bundles to help diagnose and develop customized treatment plans. They also provide cross-section views of teeth that aren’t possible using traditional 2D X-rays.
What are 3D images used for?
The 3D images are often used for:
- Deciding if a root canal is the best treatment option
- Accurately placing dental implants
- Planning for impacted teeth extractions
- Evaluating your sinuses
- Determining the cause of undiagnosed pain
- Diagnosing TMJ issues
- Treating sleep apnea
- Viewing dental trauma with fractures
The 3D imaging technology is particularly useful when looking at the proximity of your wisdom tooth to the nerves and arteries in your jaw and whether there is enough jawbone to support a dental implant.
Cone beam 3D imaging isn’t used as a replacement for 2D X-rays, but rather a diagnostic tool when the situation warrants it. Should you need 3D images, Dominion Endodontics’ state-of-the-art facility is prepared with an on-site 3D imaging machine.
How are 3D images taken?
The 3D machine sends X-ray images in a cone shape, while complex computer algorithms create a three-dimensional image from the data collected.
Once complete, your provider at Dominion Endodontics can review cross-sectional slices of the jaws and teeth with great detail on a computer monitor.
What should I expect when having 3D images taken?
You sit on a chair in front of the imaging machine. The machine has arms that rotate around your head while you sit still, taking images of your mouth. The scan takes about 15 seconds.
There’s no pain or discomfort during 3D imaging. You may need to remove jewelry, eyeglasses, removable dental appliances, hearing aids, and hairpins.
Radiation from 3D imagery exams is lower than a medical CT scan of your body, but higher than a conventional dental X-ray. This is why 3D images are only used when more detailed images are necessary.
If you’re in need of endodontic care, schedule an appointment with Dominion Endodontics by calling the practice or using the convenient online scheduling tool.