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Check Your Magnification Levels

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As processes and technologies change, it can be hard to even remember processes that were common 10 or even five years ago.   If this is the standard you were taught and have followed without question ever since, it might be time to revisit your default magnification level. A 2.5x might be right for you, but if you’re just using it because it’s standard, can you be sure?

You might be concerned that adjusting to a higher magnification level might be challenging. Unless you’re just starting out, are your eyes the same as they were when you graduated dental school? A higher magnification level may help compensate for any deterioration. It’s important also not to underestimate your ability to adapt to something new—haven’t you been doing it your entire life?

Surgitel, a leader in loupes design, reached out to Dr. George Grayson of Ontario for his thoughts on how a clinician can determine the “right” magnification for a clinician. Grayson, a fellow in the Pierre Fauchard Academy, the Academy of Dentistry International, the International Congress of Oral Implantologists and the Academy of General Dentistry, made two key points:

  • The higher the magnification, the more detail you see. This is key for everything from identifying microfractures to small blood vessels, and can help you diagnose more accurately.
  • The higher the magnification you use, the smaller the visual field—how far to each side you can see, and how much of what you see is in focus. The lower the magnification, the wider the visual field.

With those two points in mind, Grayson recommends determining not what level you could adjust to, but what size the area you work in is. When trying out different levels at your typical working distance, you can determine which level is right for you. You should be able to see most or all of your working area—but not more of the visual field than you need to.

Surgitel has a range of loupes with various magnification levels, and you may be able to improve what you see. To learn more, visit SurgiTel.com/MyRep.

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