By: Lilibeth Garcia & Paula Sozio

(Dental Clinic Antayla.2012)

Educational Goal

Our goal is to educate dental professionals on how effective the use of intraoral cameras are, how they can be an asset to a dental practice, benefit clients and the health care provider during a dental treatment.

(Dentistry Today,2012)

1) Provide history about Intraoral cameras

2) Verbalize the benefits to intraoral cameras

3) Identify two options of Intraoral cameras

4) Being able to describe how it is applied in a dental hygiene practice

5) Describe the aspects that make an IOC superior to others

6) Describe appropriate handling of the Intraoral camera

7) Being able to describe how to use the Intraoral camera

8) Provide information about proper disinfection and sterilization

9) Provide client education and display photos

10) Describe tips before purchasing the Intraoral camera

11) Provide the cost

12) Provide different suppliers that sell Intraoral cameras


Intraoral cameras were first introduced in the late 1980’s. The units were much larger, with the use of floppy disks. They were not as popular because of cost, which were $40,000 back then. Today with improved technology; smaller units are being produced, easy to access, USB, and they cost less than $5,000.

Intraoral camera benefits

  • Capture and manipulate an image in the oral cavity
  • Save images to client charts
  • Gather findings including; fractured teeth, restorations, carious lesions, plaque buildup and bleeding or inflamed tissues.
  • Client education and compliance
  • Images can be printed for clients to take home
  • Certain software’s allow for accurate colour match for veneers, crowns, bridges and fixed complete/partial dentures. This colour can be sent to the dental laboratory.

  • More freedom of movement

  • Less image quality (slightly)

  • Handle with care, make sure not to drop
  • Less freedom of movement

  • Improved image quality

  • Cord can be easily damaged

Two options of Intraoral cameras

1-Intraoral wand
2-IOC Intraoral camera

IOC in the dental hygiene clinical practice

  • Informed consent should always be offered to the client previous using
  • Clients should be Educated on the advantages of using IOC and the benefits they will receive.
  • Photos can motivate clients on their treatment by showing them areas with sign of inflammation or suspicious lesions.
  • Dental hygiene diagnosis and educational activities can be supported by images.
  • For treatment before and after photos can be taken
  • Photos are easily shared with other professionals, for referrals and need for further consultation. In addition, these images can be used as records for insurance claims. ( Keh, 2012)

Appropriate handling of IOC

  • The instruction manual should always be followed carefully.
  • Proper connection and disconnection technique is important to avoid repairs. For corded models, check if the connection is by snap or twist.
  • Proper storage is important to avoid damages, it is highly recommended to secure the IOC in a storage case.
  • Monitor should be in an easy to see position. It will facilitate education of the client and handling experience of the clinician.
  • The capture method should be in an easy to reach position for a more efficient use.(Obrochta, 2011)

Proper Handling of Intraoral Camera

(Dental Care,2012)

Helpful Steps

  • Adjust the focus according to the type of picture needed and set the focus option before entering the mouth. Auto-focus systems will adjust automatically
  • Set the option for video or picture capture.
  • Stabilize the fulcrum on a tooth surface and start from the most distal part of the mandible to examine the maxillary teeth.
  • Hold the IOC wand flat and parallel to the occlusal plane
  • Slide the IOC wand forward to see the most anterior teeth
  • Ask the client to open and close to improve the focus
  • Use a finger roll technique between the thumb, index, and middle fingers to see the lateral aspect of the teeth
  • Go to the initial position and repeat for the other side
  • Reverse the IOC wand to view lower arch
  • When possible, work on a dry field to obtain a sharper image. ( Obrochta, 2011)

Disinfection and sterilization

  • Use of heat, spray and immersion is absolutely contraindicated.
  • Alcoholic solution or antibacterial soap can be used in a wet sterile cloth for wiping.
  • Direct or dry wiping of lenses can scratch them and produce damage.
  • Barrier sleeve with an inner and outer sheaths are preferred
  • Sleeves should be properly placed to avoid blurred images production. (Obrochta, 2011)

Client education is beneficial

disclosing agent.png
Image 1.(DentalCare,2012)

Image 2.(DentalCare,2012)

Image 1: The use of IOC can help dental hygienists to monitor plaque control in children and adults. It will show the specific areas that need to be targeted during OSC. A printed photo can serve as client reminder
Image 2: IOC can be especially used for smoking cessation programs to show improvement and enhance client motivation

Tips to inquire before purchasing Intraoral cameras

Make sure the software and product will be an asset to your dental practice. Proper education and in office demonstration is manditory for the dental staff. Keep in mind that the digital images must be organized into a folder, and with proper labelling for images to be found and retrieved easily. Finally a back up system must be done daily to ensure safety of information.


New Intra oral camera models range from $598.00 to $5,000
Certain companies also sell refurbished Intraoral cameras and they are priced at $200.00 to $500.00

Many companies supply Intraoral cameras, some examples are Sinclair dental, Henry Schein, and Patterson Dental.

Intraoral Camera

(Intraoral Camera,2009)




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