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Surgical Microscopes Outpace Dental Loupes With Better Technology and Ergonomic Design

Microscopes are the key to good dentistry practices

In delicate endodontist, periodontist and cosmetic dentistry procedures, it is important to have a clear view. Dentists can count on microscopes to help them make deft, precise movements.

Dr. Richard E. Mounce, an endodontist in Rapid City, S.D., recently discussed the necessity of using a surgical microscope in his article featured in Dentalcompare, an online resource for dentistry news.

He believes the transition from dental loupes to a fully-fledged surgical microscope is a vital change for dental practices everywhere.

Utilizing a good dental microscope and other visualization tools “can make the difference between locating all the anatomy present and missing something critical,” Mounce wrote.

The American Association of Endodontists touted the use of dental microscopes in a statement from 2012.

“By providing both intense focused light as well as a high degree of magnification, the [operating microscope] has become an important part of the armamentarium for many endodontists,” the report stated. “The OM enables endodontists to resolve treatment challenges previously unrecognized or untreatable.”

While microscopes are rapidly becoming the key to good dentistry practices, some models are notorious for causing ergonomic problems because they were not designed with the clinician in mind.

The DRE Compass LED Dental Microscope has all of the features of an industry-leading microscope with a 20 watt LED coaxial illuminator, integrated video, and a six-step magnification system — all with DRE’s standard low price point — but the benefits don’t end there.

This microscope does all of these things while making sure that its operator is as comfortable as possible.

For Dr. Jeff Carter, a retired dentist, neck and back pain was often a typical part of the job. The chief cause of this discomfort was bending over a non-ergonomically designed microscope.

“In an effort to achieve a direct line of vision into the oral cavity, operators are required to lean or tilt forward in some manner,” Carter wrote in an article for Dentistry IQ.

According to Carter, maintaining an unbalanced posture requires a lot of muscle.

Clinicians who tilt their head forward at a 45 degree angle for just 10 minutes might as well have just completed 266 curls with a 20-pound dumbbell, he wrote.

By this comparison, imagine how many weight lifting repetitions the average dentist does during a normal day at the office. This exertion can cause permanent musculoskeletal damage.

His solution? Sitting up straight.

The DRE Compass LED microscope’s inclinable binocular rotates from zero to 180 degrees, which allows clinicians to stay upright during use, preventing strain on neck and back muscles.

The eyepiece is also designed to be suitable for glasses-wearers and maneuvering the machine is easy with the Compass LED’s ergonomic handles.