Virtual Reality Improving Dental Experience

New technologies promise to improve the way we used to work. We already use them in many fields, including stomatology. Let us find out for better or worse are the changes.

As most dentists Sven Holtorf perfectly understands that his patients are not very happy to visit him. “The visit to the dentist associates with fear, inconvenience, pain, it is hardly pleasant”, says he.

However, recently Holtorf has developed new medicine device. He hopes that it will help his patients to feel a little bit more comfortable. This is not a special dental drill nor a new painkiller, these are glasses.  

Holtorf’s device is a system of eyeCAD Connect, software of virtual reality, developed by its company iDENT. It is installed on Epson smart glasses. Putting glasses on during the consultation, the doctor sees not only an oral cavity of the patient, but also real time data from a special scanner. When the scanning finishes, Holtorf sends the data to the laboratory where specialists using a virtual model produce the crown of a necessary form.

Earlier to scan the patient’s teeth the dentist has to hold a camera in his hand and see the results on the screen as it was during ultrasound scanning. But now using glasses the doctor does not have to shift his gaze to the screen, because he can see the picture in the glasses of virtual reality.  

“During the scanning the doctor does not have to look at the screen, he can keep in touch with a patient. That’s the point”, says he.

However, there is a time lag. It is vital in the dentist’s work that the image reflects in glasses instantly. Holtorf and his colleagues found the way to solve the problem.  

Firstly, instead of Internet connection they use a local network. It allows not to send data to distant servers and avoid time lags. Besides, work through local network allows to resolve another problem – security.

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“That’s why we can guarantee that private information will never exceed the walls of our company”, says Holtorf.

The second way to avoid time lags while information transmission is to lower the image resolution. “We had to use the images with lower resolution, but in our case it is acceptable”, he says.

Holtorf thinks that the devices of new generation will have higher resolution.

At the same time to cope with all these technical problems is easier than with a human factor. It does not matter how good is the system created by you, if your clients do not use it, it is absolutely useless. “People performing these kinds of work have long-term experience and are used to performing all their duties without technologies”, says Batstone. To convince workers to use a tab or wear glasses is not an easy task, if they have been going without such devices for many years”.

The first devices of virtual reality failed only because workers refused to work with them. Nonetheless, Holtorf managed to convince his colleagues in the efficiency of his device. At dentistry conference this innovation was welcomed with open arms. “All dentists that used the scanner told us: “This is great, this is really brilliant”. Even the most experienced doctors agreed”.

Holtorf also points that his patients also admitted the difference. “Most patient are satisfied that I am looking at them not at the computer’s screen”, says he.


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