Digital Scanners represent cutting-edge technology that allows dentists to create a virtual, computer-generated replica of the hard and soft tissues in the mouth. This digital technology captures clear and highly accurate impression data in mere minutes, without the need for traditional impression materials that can be both inconvenient and messy. Digital optical scanners are both safe and highly accurate.
The area is first prepared and then once it is dried, the teeth are lightly dusted with specially formulated titanium dioxide powder in order to scan both arches and the bite. The digital impression typically is captured using an intraoral wand that is inserted into the patient's mouth and moved over the surface area of the tooth or teeth. Most digital impression systems use a chairside monitor to display the impression image as it is captured.
It takes approximately a minute and a half to capture a digital impression of prepared teeth. An impression of the teeth in the opposite arch takes just 45 seconds.
As the dentist reviews the electronic real-time image, he or she can enlarge and manipulate it for enhanced detail to ensure that any possible mistakes are identified and corrected onscreen before sending the digital impression electronically to the dental laboratory.