Dental Treatment Evolving with Digital Technology (Part 6)
Can AI Protect Your Teeth? -Application to X-ray Diagnostic Imaging has Potential for Early Detection
A Report from the UK on AI-Based Dental X-ray Diagnostics
When you have been to a dentist, you have probably had X-rays taken. You might have been surprised to find cavities that you could not recognise just by looking inside your mouth in a mirror. Of course, it depends on the properties of the cavity, a lot of information can be read from the x-ray image.
X-rays in general dentistry are mainly two-dimensional pictures of the flattened entire jaw called pantomography, or small pictures called dental x-rays. Recently, CT scans are often taken the three-dimensional structure of the jaw. The images are sometimes taken for safe-ty when extracting wisdom teeth or molar teeth close to the mandibular canal (through which nerves and blood vessels pass) or maxillary sinus. In addition, more three-dimensional information, which cannot be obtained with two-dimensional photographs might be required when performing gum surgery for periodontal disease (periodontal sur-gery), complex root canal treatment, or implant surgery.
Reading X-ray images to determine the depth and spread of cavities and the condition of the inside bone leads to the decision of treatment, which requires experience and knowledge. While AI is being increasingly adopted in medicine for reading x-rays and di-agnostic imaging, research has recently been conducted in dentistry.
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