What Is a Cone Beam Image?

What Is a Cone Beam Image?

Posted by DR. LEE on Apr 6 2021, 12:16 PM

Cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) is a type of advanced X-ray that allows dentists to get a three-dimensional image of the mouth. 

It is a common and safe imaging technique that is usually painless and quick.

Dr. Daniel Lee at East Burn Dentistry and Implants in Portland, Oregon, offers complete orthodontic treatments along with advanced cone beam imaging to ensure the dental health of his patients. 

This blog provides an overview of cone beam imaging in dentistry.

Cone Beam CT and Traditional CT

Cone beam CT, unlike traditional dental X-rays, also photographs the soft tissues of the mouth such as the gums, tongue, and nerves. It enables your dentist to do a thorough examination of your teeth and jaws.

A cone-shaped X-ray beam revolves around the patient's head to create 150 to 200 high-resolution two-dimensional pictures, which are then digitally merged to form a three-dimensional image. 

A low-power medical fluoroscopy tube is used in the cone beam CT scanner. Lowering the power level reduces the amount of radiation emitted around the patient.

A dental CT, on the other hand, employs a fan beam to transfer radiation in a helix/spiral pattern and it follows an older technique that utilizes a rotating high-output anode X-ray tube that was created in the 1970s. 

Uses of Cone Beam Imaging

Cone beam CT imaging is used for a wide variety of purposes. It can be beneficial in scenarios like:

  • Surgical planning of teeth that have become impacted
  • TMD (temporomandibular joint dysfunction) diagnosis
  • For an in-depth examination of the jaw, sinuses, nerve canals, and nasal cavity
  • To detect and treat jaw tumors
  • Identifying bone structure and teeth alignment
  • Identifying the source of pain or disease
  • Cephalometric analysis 
  • Reconstructive surgery 
  • Dental implant installation that is precise and safe

How Does Cone Beam Imaging Work?

CBCT scans are a relatively recent technique. To deliver 3D dental images, they employ a rotating gantry with an X-ray source and detector. Because of the cone-shaped source of ionizing radiation that is focused over the region of inspection, dental cone beam CTs can provide hundreds of planar projection photos in a single spin.

If you’d like to know more about cone beam imaging and its benefits in dentistry,  contact East Burn Dentistry and Implants at (503) 233-4871. You can also directly visit the office located at 1415 SE Ankeny St, Portland, OR 97214 for your dental health concerns.

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