Polaris Intraoral Video Camera System by Air Techniques
Seeing is believing. Our patients have been hearing us describe issues with their teeth for years. We give them a hand mirror and expect they will become experts in peering onto the reflection of our small mouth mirror, while describing a crack, marginal defect, or tissue changes. They mostly listen, sometimes nod, but more often than not, they just glaze over our recommendations.
Along came the Polaris by Air Techniques? a very lightweight intraoral camera that elegantly fits into any corner of the oral cavity to capture images of our patient?s teeth. Patients now not only hear but also see what is going on in their mouths.
I began using Polaris about 6 months ago. I must say that I was concerned with both the ability to utilize the system and our patient?s acceptance. The learning curve was not that difficult, considering I never previously had an intraoral camera in my operatory. With the Polaris Intraoral Video Camera System, you simply plug in the handpiece cable to your computer, connect the handpiece to the cable and you are ready to go. The head of the camera swivels to access all areas of the oral cavity. The 2 buttons on the handpiece both secure and capture the images. You merely ?walk? around the mouth with the camera to view and when you want to record, you then touch the first button. If you are satisfied with the image created, you touch the second button to save. The Polaris and cable may be removed from your system after each use or mounted with the supplied handpiece holder. We are currently using the Polaris with a laptop and remove the handpiece between patients.
Eyes Are Opened
Polaris images are viewed in our offi ce with Air Techniques VISIX imaging system. As each image is captured, we are able to see a full screen size view as we are capturing each picture. Images are retained for future visits as well as for documentation to benefit companies.
The most important benefit of this system is gently touched upon in the product literature but offers a huge benefit to our practice. Once the images are stored, then shown to our patients, a revelation occurs. I cannot tell you how many patients are aghast by ?what is in their mouths.?
I take pictures of the lower anterior linguals prior to prophylaxis. The calculus accumulation, as demonstrated on a full screen, is a powerful adjunct to plaque control and the desire for better personal oral hygiene. Discussing replacing the leaking old amalgam, historically, was questioned because ?it does not hurt.? Now patients are able to see the chasm they would never be able to envision.
Patients ?get it? when they see it. Some patients want to schedule immediately. Some patients will consider it but schedule restorative within a short period of time. The remainder of our patients are more educated. I ask each of my patients what they think about this new (to our office) technology after I show them their images. I have heard ?interesting,? ?gross,? ?educational,? and ?informative.? I ask the patients if they feel any of it is ?too much information,? and all have said ?no.? They appreciate the visualization of the issues in their mouths and are able to understand both the problem and the solution options better.
In this economy, we can all use a little help. The Polaris Intraoral Video Camera System by Air Techniques has been a great asset to our practice.