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Are Intraoral Cameras useful in Communicating Shade?

I recently met up with my good friend, James Gallagher, on the empty exhibitor floor at the Greater NY Dental Meeting. Hurricane Sandy, kept attendance down. James, located in Boston, works for Digital Doc Intraoral Cameras. He said that he is IOCsometimes asked if Intraoral Cameras are capable of taking meaningful shades.  My initial response was no but how often do we use conjecture as opposed to really knowing the truth. I decided to get an objective answer.

To accomplish this, we compared an Intraoral camera picture of his teeth with a nice point and shoot digital camera (The DentalFoto Canon G12)  http://www.dlcenters.com/systems.php

We analyzed both pictures in a computerized Shade program called ClearMatch. This program objectively determines shade.

Digital Doc is one of the best, if not the best intraoral camera, BUT it fell short for shade communication. The images file size, 640 x 480 = 91k,  is small and does not provide enough detail for any practical shade communication. Intraoral cameras do a good job of showing the appearance of cracked teeth but not shade. The digital camera has resolution of 2816 x 2112 = 1,500k

In conclusion, use a digital camera for shade communication not an intraoral camera.


dennis_bio_wp_marginAbout the author: Dennis Braunston is the Founder of Dental Learning Centers®, and a leader in dental technology since 1990. He is recognized as a pioneer and expert at teaching digital photography, cosmetic imaging and case presentation in dentistry. Dennis has developed a number of successful dental products, and is an author and nationally recognized key note speaker. As an accredited continuing education provider Dennis has trained Dentists around the world on best practices in Dental imaging and photography. For more information, contact Dennis Braunston at Dental Learning Centers: dennis@dlcenters.com; www.dlcenters.com.

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