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Elevate Your Dental Practice with 3D CBCT Imaging: Why It’s the Ultimate Choice Over 2D Panoramic X-rays

By Blog

Why 3D CBCT Extraoral X-ray should be the technology of choice, even as an entry level option.


In the ever-evolving landscape of digital dentistry, staying up-to-date with the latest technology is crucial to provide patients with the best possible care. One such advancement that has transformed the field is Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT), a three-dimensional extraoral X-ray imaging technology. 

While 2D panoramic X-rays have long been a staple in dentistry, the advantages offered by 3D CBCT make it the technology of choice, even for entry-level scanning. 

In this blog post, we will explore the reasons why 3D CBCT should be your preferred imaging technology in the realm of digital dentistry, even if it’s your first foray into panoramic imaging.

1.  Superior Diagnostic Precision

One of the primary reasons to opt for 3D CBCT over 2D panoramic X-rays is the superior diagnostic precision it offers. Unlike 2D images that provide a flat representation of oral structures, CBCT scans generate detailed, three-dimensional images that allow dentists to view anatomical structures from various angles. This enhanced perspective is invaluable when planning complex procedures like implant placement, orthodontic treatment or assessing impacted teeth.

2. Enhanced Treatment Planning

3D CBCT technology also enables dentists to plan treatments with unparalleled accuracy. By visualising the exact dimensions and relationships of teeth, bones, nerves and soft tissues in 3D, clinicians can create precise treatment plans, reducing the margin for error. This level of precision leads to improved outcomes and patient satisfaction.

3. Reduced Radiation Exposure

Concerns about radiation exposure are common in dental imaging. And rightly so.

3D CBCT addresses this concern by delivering lower doses of radiation compared to traditional CT scans. This makes it a safer option for patients, particularly for routine imaging needs, and aligns with the principles of ALARA (As Low As Reasonably Achievable) radiation exposure.

4. Efficient Workflow

Time is money in a dental practice, and 3D CBCT technology can significantly streamline your workflow. CBCT scans provide immediate results, eliminating the need for time-consuming film development. The digital nature of CBCT also enables easy storage, retrieval and sharing of patient records, reducing administrative burdens.

5. Expanded Diagnostic Capabilities

3D CBCT isn’t just limited to dental applications. It can be used to diagnose conditions beyond the oral cavity, such as sinus problems, temporomandibular joint disorders and airway assessments. Offering these expanded diagnostic capabilities can attract new patients and enhance your practice’s reputation for comprehensive care.

6. Competitive Advantage

In the highly competitive field of dentistry, staying ahead of the curve can give your practice a significant edge. Embracing 3D CBCT technology demonstrates your commitment to providing the best possible care to your patients. It can also attract referrals from other dental professionals seeking your expertise in 3D imaging.

7. Future-proofing your practice

Digital dentistry is continuously evolving and 3D CBCT is at the forefront of these advancements. By investing in this technology now, you are future-proofing your practice. As new software updates and applications become available, you can seamlessly integrate them into your workflow, staying at the forefront of your field.

3D CBCT technology is not just reserved for advanced or specialist practices. It offers clear advantages even for entry-level scanning needs. From superior diagnostic precision and enhanced treatment planning to reduced radiation exposure and efficient workflows, the benefits of 3D CBCT are undeniable. 

At Blueprint Dental, we’ve helped many practices adopt digital imaging technologies and workflows and our specialist digital teams will guide you every step of the way from initial discussions around which 3D CBCT best suits your practice’s needs to installation and training – ensuring both you and your patients get the most out of you new investment.

We represent some of the world’s leading dental 3D CBCT equipment brands , including the Dentsply Sirona Axeos 3d Scanner and the Carestream Dental range of 3D extraoral scanners.

By choosing 3D CBCT as your extraoral X-ray imaging technology of choice, you are not only elevating your practice but also providing the best possible care to your patients in the world of digital dentistry. 

Embrace the future today and watch your practice thrive!

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Carestream 9600 CBCT Ceph image

Top 5 Ways Digital Dentistry Can Improve Your Dental Business

By Blog, NEWS, What's New

In recent years, advancements in technology have revolutionised many industries and dentistry is no exception. The advent of digital dentistry has transformed the way dental practices and laboratories operate, enhancing efficiency, precision and, ultimately, patient experience. By incorporating digital tools and techniques, dental professionals can streamline their workflows, improve diagnostics and offer advanced treatments. In this blog post, we’ll explore the top five ways digital dentistry can significantly improve your dental business.

1. Enhanced Diagnostic Capabilities

Digital dentistry provides dentists with powerful diagnostic tools that enable accurate and efficient assessment of oral health. With technologies such as cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) and intraoral scanners, dentists can capture high-resolution 3D images of the oral cavity. These images offer detailed insights into the patient’s dental structure, aiding the early detection of cavities, bone loss and other oral health issues. Precise diagnostics lead to improved treatment planning, resulting in better patient outcomes and increased patient satisfaction.

Carestream CS 8200 3D CBCT
CEREC Product Family

2. Streamlined Workflow and Improved Efficiency

Traditional dental processes often involve multiple manual steps, leading to delays and potential errors. Digital dentistry eliminates many of these challenges by digitising various aspects of dental procedures. Digital record-keeping systems and practice management software simplify administrative tasks, including appointment scheduling and patient communication. Additionally, CAD/CAM (computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing) technology allows for the creation of same-day restorations, such as crowns and bridges, reducing the need for multiple appointments and improving overall workflow efficiency.

3. Precision and Predictability in Restorative Dentistry

Digital dentistry offers precise and predictable outcomes in restorative treatments. Through the use of intraoral scanners, digital impressions can be taken, replacing traditional messy and uncomfortable impression materials. These digital impressions are more accurate, reducing the chance of remakes and adjustments. CAD/CAM technology enables the creation of custom restorations, such as crowns, veneers, and dentures, with exceptional precision and fit. By embracing digital workflows, dentists can provide patients with high-quality restorations in a shorter timeframe, leading to improved patient satisfaction and practice growth.

CS1500 intra oral camera

4. Improved Patient Communication and Engagement

Digital dentistry promotes better patient communication and engagement, resulting in a more informed and satisfied patient base. Intraoral cameras allow dentists to capture and display real-time images of a patient’s oral condition, helping them understand the treatment recommendations and actively participate in their oral care. Treatment plans can be visually presented using 3D models and simulations, enabling patients to visualise the expected outcomes. Digital platforms, such as patient portals and mobile applications, facilitate communication, appointment reminders and educational resources, fostering a stronger patient-dentist relationship.

5. Continuing Education and Collaboration Opportunities

Digital dentistry opens up new avenues for continuing education and collaboration among dental professionals. Web-based platforms and virtual conferences provide access to a vast array of educational resources, allowing dentists to stay updated with the latest techniques and advancements in the field. Online forums and social media communities enable dental professionals to connect and collaborate with peers, fostering knowledge-sharing and interdisciplinary approaches. By embracing digital dentistry, dental practices can foster a culture of ongoing learning and innovation, positioning themselves as leaders in the industry.

i700 group shot

In conclusion, digital dentistry is transforming the dental landscape by enhancing diagnostic capabilities, streamlining workflows, improving treatment precision, and strengthening patient engagement. Embracing these technological advancements can significantly benefit your dental business, leading to improved patient outcomes, increased operational efficiency and enhanced practice growth. By staying abreast of the latest digital tools and techniques, dental professionals can provide exceptional care while staying at the forefront of the ever-evolving dental industry. 

Blueprint Dental is your ideal digital solutions partner as you embark upon your digital dentistry ‘journey’. With years of experience and access to a wide range of the world’s most renowned dental equipment brands, we’ve helped countless dental surgeries and laboratories transform their workflows from totally analogue to wholly digital.

If you’re thinking of starting your digital transformation, or already have some elements in place which you’d like to expand upon, contact us for a no obligation chat about your project and vision for your dental business.

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Selecting the right dental equipment for your practice

By Blog

When it comes to selecting equipment for your dental practice, whether it’s to replace an old piece of kit or to get your brand new business up and running, we bet you’re pretty cognisant of the fact that these are BIG decisions.

BIG decisions, with LONG timeframes to live with if you don’t get it quite right. And BIG decisions with a LOT of different elements which need to be considered:


  • Equipment needs to be comfy and ergonomic for both you and your staff
  • It needs to be practical and do the job (ie. be fit for purpose)
  • It probably needs to impress your patients, it definitely needs to keep them safe and you most certainly want it to contribute to their positive outcomes
  • Oh, and it needs to be purchased, fitted and commissioned all within your budget
Wimpole-Street-Dental-Clinic-surgery-11-1800x1200 2

So, we thought we’d put together a little article here to help guide you through the equipment minefield and arm you with some tips and tricks to make sure you get what you need for your surgery, without any expensive mistakes.

So, where to start?

Actually, let’s start before you start….

It’s really easy to dive straight in and get carried away looking at shiny new pieces of kit online – beautifully kitted out surgeries on Pinterest, colour-ordinated treatment rooms on Instagram, manufacturers’ and local suppliers’ websites stuffed with features and benefits and performance data. All of these have a place in your decision making process, but before you get stuck in, take a step back and a little bit of time to:

  • Ask your peers – talk to other dentists about what equipment they have. It’s a great chance to find out what it’s like to use and work with all day, every day. Ask them what they like, ask them what they’d change or improve and ask them about the dental equipment supplier they use and what their after sales service is like.
  • Read some online reviews – now we know that you’ll get the good, the bad AND the downright ugly here, but, with an open mind, you’ll also be able to spot any trends and useful feedback about the equipment you’re researching. At the very least, it will provide you with some questions to ask a potential equipment supplier.
  • Go to an event – Something which we’ve been missing in the last couple of years, but now there are a number of great opportunities to attend industry events with exhibitions, which allow you to see the equipment up close and get a feel for its overall look and quality. 

So, doing a little bit of preliminary research should have furnished you with some ideas of which types of equipment you think you’d like to look a little deeper into. 

Now’s the time to get really excited and start some decision-making. 

What are your priorities?

Think about the effects the type of equipment you purchase will have on those around you.

What are the effects on the patient?

Think about comfort and style, but also consider hard facts like radiation dose.

Ergonomics is always a big one – you and your team are working with this kit all day every day. Does the chair adjust to a comfortable working height? Does that CBCT unit fit in the room with an operative and a patient, without too much of a squeeze? Can your dental nurse load and unload the steriliser without bending and twisting?

Orthophos E

Consider your ‘needs’ v your ‘wants’. Also look at what you may be able to add on at a later date, if your budget doesn’t allow it in the first instance. For example you could consider a 3D ready CBCT unit, which would allow you to get started with 2D extraoral imaging, with the ability to ‘upgrade’ to 3D as your practice expands.

Next…the bean counting piece

First and foremost – Set your budget…and stick to it!

If you’re setting up your own practice, you will probably already have had discussions with financial and accounting professionals, who are providing advice to you. 

But, whatever your reason for needing new kit, there are also other ways of financing it in addition to outright purchase.

Lease purchase has become a flexible and viable way of acquiring the equipment you need from Day 1, whilst spreading the cost over several years. More on that particular subject a little later.

Choosing an equipment supplier

Having considered all of the above, now’s the time to contact dental equipment suppliers and whittle down your choices and identifying what you can get for your available budget.

So, what should you look out for when you start talking to an equipment supplier?

Well, you’re in luck here – you’ve come to a great place to start. At Blueprint, we’re perfectly placed to help you with all of those big decisions and ensure you don’t make those BIG, COSTLY mistakes.

But, in all seriousness, there are things you need to look for when selecting a dental equipment supplier.

  • Are they well established?
  • Do they have a good reputation in the industry? Perhaps they were recommended to you when you spoke to your peers
  • What’s their after sales service like? This is a real biggie!
  • Do they have a wide portfolio of equipment to choose from and represent quality dental manufacturers?

With nearly two decades of serving at the forefront of the UK’s dental industry, we’re pretty confident that we tick all those boxes and we’re more than happy to let you have a chat with any of our customers who’ll give you the lowdown on working with us. 

We don’t use the hashtag #mostrecommended lightly or flippantly!

If you would like to discuss your project with us further, we have a whole host of ways we can help you evaluate and choose the best equipment for your practice, your patients and your budget, in addition to having one of the most knowledgeable and passionate teams in the business.

More on Finance

We mentioned lease purchase a little earlier as a great way of getting up and running and spreading the payments for your new equipment. We’re really fortunate to work with the fantastic team at Vector Finance and we can put you in contact with them to help calculate the most cost-efficient (and potentially even more importantly tax-efficient) ways of financing your equipment.

We’d love the chance to assist you with your equipment search and help you make the RIGHT decisions that’ll keep you, your patients and your accountant happy in the long run.


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