By Danny Chan
If the attributes of a fuss-free, visually enhanced digital precision intraoral scanning device in a small footprint wasn’t enough to make you buy the iTero Element intraoral scanner, its powerful new software upgrade might. Align Technology, the global medical device company behind Invisalign® clear aligners, recently announced a software upgrade for the iTero Element intraoral scanner that lets you compare current and historical scans using the new TimeLapse technology. The version 1.5 upgrade further allows patient scans to be completed in as little as one minute.
The iTero Element intraoral scanning system, offers real-time visualisation of detailed digital scans on a high-definition 19” multi-touch screen display. Using the vibrant and realistic coloured images on the monitor, dentists can easily engage their patients on any subject – from their oral concerns to treatment options and diagnostic outcomes.
The exclusive TimeLapse technology available with the iTero Element intraoral scanner is a newly added feature that enhances chairside treatment acceptance and aids treatment conversion. Whether you are a general practitioner or orthodontist, the ability to compare a patient’s historic and current 3D scans is immensely beneficial. The TimeLapse upgrade allows you to do just that – not only as a feature of diagnostic interest but also a communicative tool that greatly reduces the distance between doctor and patient.
On one hand, it offers the practical means of identifying and measuring tooth movement, tooth wear and gingival recession. On the other, it’s the modern communication device that your gadget-savvy patients have come to expect. Indeed, nothing bridges the doctor-patient communication divide more effectively, or impressively, than showing 3D scans morphing from past to present bite records.
With the software upgrade, dentists can capture full mouth and bite scans in as little as one minute, which facilitates the integration of iTero Element intraoral scanner tools into each patient consultation. To review a specific area of interest, all the practitioner needs to do is drag the magnifier from the upper right portion of the screen over the area to enable an animation of the change. You can also zoom in on the animation by pinching the touchscreen.
The benefits of using the patient’s own 3D bite records in pre-treatment diagnostics and patient communication also apply to other treatments like implants, sleep apnoea appliances as well as crown & bridge restorations.
The iTero Element intraoral scanner with TimeLapse technology offers more than just a nifty way of increasing patient conversion to recommended treatments. Practices offering Invisalign treatments get more features with Invisalign Progress Assessment Tool and Invisalign Outcome Simulator. While the Progress Assessment feature helps you to check whether your patient’s Invisalign treatments are tracking to plan, the latter allows you to show your patient the simulated outcome of the teeth straightening process in 360˚ views– even making adjustments on the fly during the chairside consultation.
As a practice building feature, the increased scanning speed of iTero Element intraoral scanner is a huge time saver. Besides dentists, any team member – including dental hygienists, dental assistants and treatment coordinators – can use the intraoral scanner, which helps to free up doctor time.
Its small footprint and intuitive functions make it easy to incorporate the system into the practice quickly. The high-resolution scans and display clearly show 3D visualisations with colour mapping and real-time feedback, all of which help to engender trust and confidence in your patients. Of course, for Invisalign treatments, it also helps you to nudge patients back in line when their compliance falls off the mark. Finally, the iTero Element intraoral scanner eliminates the need for messy bite registrations and placing squishy impression material in the patient’s mouth. This significantly enhances the patient experience and makes the assistant’s job easier.
With the upgrades, general practitioner dentists and orthodontists can leverage a host of applications and tools for a wide range of restorative or orthodontic solutions. The new TimeLapse technology, coupled with faster scanning time, simply makes the iTero Element intraoral scanner an even more desirable option towards modern diagnostics and digital preventative care.