Imagine being able to see what you are removing in a deep periodontal pocket. Wouldn’t it be great to see what you are removing rather than guessing and hoping for the best that you removed all the pathogenic bacteria, calculus, and biofilm? Equally important, wouldn’t it be nice to catch something early like a root fracture or root caries that was covered by edematous tissue to allow the dentist to treat less invasively and at the same time possibly prevent unnecessary pain and infection in the future for the patient?
I am sure many of you take post scaling and root planing radiographs to make sure you removed all the calculus subgingivally, but how do you know you removed all the biofilm without a microvisual view? I know how gratifying it is to see calculus spurs no longer visible on radiographs and tactilely feel that the deposits have been removed, but you cannot see biofilm or bacteria on radiographs.
As hygienists, we concentrate on prevention. Why not utilize some of the best technology available to prevent unnecessary pain and discomfort due to surgical intervention? One of these technologies is the periodontal endoscope, which has been shown to improve periodontal outcomes and as someone who will be performing their first endoscopic procedure in a few weeks, I have been researching and training to be more accustomed and comfortable with the technology to include online and hands-on training.
If you want to learn more about periodontal endoscopes, check out these episodes and take the course to get your FREE CE credits.