What Is the DIAGNOdent?
Diagnosing tooth decay beneath the surface of teeth can be challenging, especially when cavities are occurring in the grooves and pits of the enamel. Digital x-rays and clinical evaluations do not always reveal sub-surface decay, especially in its early stages. To help diagnose tooth decay as early as possible, the pediatric dentists at Lancaster Pediatric Dental Associates use the DIAGNOdent cavity detector to examine the tooth structure. This innovative device employs laser fluorescence to discover areas of decay that may be developing beneath the surface layer of a tooth. By doing so, our team can often treat cavities before they become a deeper or more severe issue. For more information on how your son or daughter may benefit from a cavity screening with DIAGNOdent technology, contact our Lancaster, PA practice and talk with our friendly team today.
What are the benefits of DIAGNOdent?
Many pediatric patients learn to be afraid of cavities and the dentist from a young age. By providing cutting-edge, minimally-invasive diagnostic procedures here at Lancaster Pediatric Dental Associates, we are able to mitigate this apprehension and also address your child's tooth health at the same time. Other benefits of the DIAGNOdent detector include:
- Highly accurate readings of tooth health
- Quick, painless procedure that can be incorporated into a routine exam
- Ability to decide on the most minimal plan forward
- Prevents sealants from being placed on a tooth with signs of decay
"Staff was great with my very active one year old."- S.H. / Google / Mar 04, 2023
"I cannot say enough good about this place. My boys love coming here. The staff is kind and they seriously stepped up to help me when my youngest shut the car door on his thumb and I panicked. They cleaned him up and calmed him down and got him through his cleaning and were just sincerely kind. I am disappointed they no longer take my insurance and if I didn’t have four kids to pay for I would just pay the extra myself. This place is great for your children and the entire staff is top notch. Thank you LPDA for many years of service to my family."- M.K. / Google / Feb 25, 2023
"We love LPDA! We have had wonderful experiences there and always receive great care. We've recently seen Dr. Mark Levicoff-- he is great with kids and gives such compassionate care. Our hygienist Mary was also wonderful and made the experience the best it could be for my slightly nervous daughter :)"- L.F. / Google / Feb 22, 2023
"Wonderful staff, clean facility and a toy token tower for children to choose a prize at the end of their visit"- K.H. / Google / Feb 19, 2023
"Our kids love it here. The staff (minus one older woman dental tech who wasn't super pleasant) was great. They made our kids feel comfortable. The facility is clean and very geared to kids. Would 100% recommend"- B.S. / Google / Feb 17, 2023
Best Candidates for DIAGNOdent
By the time most cavities become noticeable in the mouth, the decay has already caused a significant amount of damage within a tooth. Our team uses the DIAGNOdent advanced screening tool to identify unseen tooth decay that may be occurring within or between teeth, even in the very early (incipient) stage. Your child's entire mouth can be screened within a few minutes in a process that is comfortable and noninvasive. Whether your child has a history of decay or has never experienced a cavity, a screening with our DIAGNOdent laser can be extremely beneficial. DIAGNOdent technology is safe for use on patients of all ages.
The Cavity Screening Process
When areas of decay are identified in the very early stages, we can often take a more conservative approach to care, treating small cavities with simple fillings or less invasive options before they expand and require greater treatment needs. Usually administered during your child's dental check-up visits, the DIAGNOdent is a pen-shaped device that we pass over your child's teeth as it searches for decay. The laser emitted from the pen measures the fluorescence within the tooth structure as it is guided over each area of the mouth. If the DIAGNOdent detects fluorescence within an area, it will signal a number scale to our team. Higher numbers generally indicate the presence of decay within a tooth.
What If Decay Is Detected?
If tooth decay is detected during the DIAGNOdent process, our highly trained pediatric dentists will create a customized treatment plan to address the cavity. The smaller the area of decay, the more conservatively we can treat it, which is a significant advantage of early detection. At Lancaster Pediatric Dental Associates, we encourage you to keep routine dental exams and cleanings for your child and help them maintain good oral hygiene at home to help protect their smile against cavity formation.
What should I expect after a DIAGNOdent procedure?
After a DIAGNOdent procedure, you will be able to resume your regular routine. The procedure is similar to dental x-rays in that it is painless and quick. Once each tooth is scanned and checked for cavities, a treatment plan is determined. We'll schedule further treatment to fix the issue if decay is detected. If no decay is present, we'll use the scan from the appointment to track the progress of any future decay. Take a proactive approach to your oral health and schedule an appointment with us today. We look forward to treating any issues before they become bigger dental problems.
DIAGNOdent screenings generally fall under dental exams, which are often covered by dental insurance. Our financial team will contact your insurance provider to gain an estimate of any additional costs before beginning your child's examination. Lancaster Pediatric Dental Associates offers several payment choices to help you cover any out-of-pocket expenses for your family's dental care.
How accurate is DIAGNOdent in identifying tooth decay?
Traditionally, x-rays and visual examination assist with cavity detection. The DIAGNOdent laser lights up areas of the teeth where cavities and decay are naked to the eye, inside of the tooth. The DIAGNOdent laser helps detect a cavity earlier in the process so our dental team can address it promptly.
Does a DIAGNOdent laser hurt?
A light probe scans the teeth with harmless light pulses to quickly check for tooth decay. The laser doesn't damage the teeth, making the procedure comfortable and sought after as an option for cavity detection.
How is tooth decay detected?
Tooth decay is detected by the sensor (when a fluorescent light emits from the probe). Once detected, it's translated as a digital readout to a sensor. The number on the sensor determines the amount of decay in the tooth or teeth.
Early Detection of Tooth Decay
Detecting a cavity early on is imperative for minimizing your child's dental health needs and preserving their oral health. By utilizing the DIAGNOdent, we can often catch decay before it spreads and causes more extensive dental problems. At Lancaster Pediatric Dental Associates, we are proud to incorporate DIAGNOdent into routine checkups to help save our patients time and money down the road. To learn more about our advanced approach to pediatric dental care, contact our Lancaster, PA office to schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience.