Dental microscope usage is a win-win approach!
Both patient and operating dentist will benefit from it!
The dental microscope (DM) – The third eye
One of the greatest advancements in the history of dentistry was the introduction of the dental microscope (DM).
This technology held the unmistakable promise for improved and more precise clinical performance in multidisciplinary treatment procedures. Unfortunately the widespread integration of the DM into mainstream dentistry has still not occurred. This may be attributed to two reasons: Firstly there is a steep learning curve involved in the usage of the DM. Secondly, according to Thomas Kuhn a paradigm shift (a new concept) in medicine and science takes at least 20 years to be universally accepted.
Advantages of the dental microscope:
3. Ergonomics and surgical dexterity
4. Imaging and documentation
5. Communication with patients, staff, and colleagues
The superior magnification and shadow-free coaxial illumination of the DM enhances the visibility of details and therefore treatment precision and quality are improved. The third eye (DM) enables more vision-driven than tactility-driven precision dentistry.
A dentist’s postural demands during treatment are at a greater risk of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) than the general population. In treatment under pressure it is often necessary to push through discomfort like neck hyperflexion, which can lead to herniating a cervical disc. Long-lasting upper arm raising can impinge a shoulder ligament and it causes shoulder pain and impairment. Proper microscope positioning, settings, and usage enforces the dentist’s ergonomics. Furthermore, it is known that in all age groups and experience levels the use of high magnification enhances dentist’s fine motor skills.
The dental microscope has become an important tool for imaging, documentation, and communication with patients, staff (co-observation), and colleagues.
The microscope handgrips and digital visualization system has the option of HD digital documentation. With the push of a button on the handgrip, you can capture images or video clips, to be shared with the patient or referring doctors.
The arrival of the dental microscope in my practice in August 1995 marked a turning point in my career. It immediately created new challenges and unanticipated rewards.
Since then I am using the dental microscope in almost every treatment modality and most of the time (75% microscope, 25% loupes).
I was fortunate to be involved in the development of the first high-end surgical operating microscope tailored for dental usage. In 2002 the Zeiss dental microscope OPMI PROergo® was released, and as its name suggests, provides us with ergonomic advantages. This leveraging microscope-assisted precision dentistry has a profound impact on our profession and brings us to the next level.
Finally, if we remember to follow ergonomics with the corresponding tools such a dental microscope in our daily practice, we just might have a long and pain-free professional career. More importantly, we can provide our patients with great confidence and higher precision treatments that 20 years ago would have seemed unattainable by any standard.