Dental imaging or dental cone beam computed tomography (CT) is a special type of x-ray machine used in situations where regular dental or facial x-rays are not sufficient. This type of CT scanner uses a special type of technology to generate three dimensional (3-D) images of dental structures, soft tissues, nerve paths, and bone in the craniofacial region in a single scan. Images obtained with cone beam CT allow for more precise treatment planning.
Dental cone beam CT can be used to produce detailed images of the bone and is performed to evaluate diseases of the jaw, dentition, bony structures of the face, nasal cavity and sinuses. It is widely used before a dental implant procedure.
With cone beam CT, an x-ray beam in the shape of a cone is moved around the patient to produce a large number of high-quality images.