Modern Dental Technology


A Panorex,  Panoramic Radiography, is an impressive diagnostic imaging machine.  It is used to create a radiographic image, commonly referred to as an x-ray that shows Dr. Cochran the complete lower portion of a patients face.  This image captures not only the teeth; but also the roots and the underlying bone that supports the teeth.  The joint of the lower jaw, referred to as Temporomandibular Joint or TMJ, is also shown.  While the focus of this image is the components of the oral cavity we often capture parts of the nasals sinus and some of the neck and can sometimes see other medical issues that we would refer you to your primary care physician for further evaluation.  The ‘Pano’ here at Cochran Dental is able to be used in either a standing or seated position for those that are wheelchair bound.  We will position you into the machine and adjust it so that the best picture can be captured.  The machine will hold you in position as it rotates around you.  The image that is created is sent directly to our computers and is ready for viewing before we even make it back to the room.

For patients with ‘difficulty’ taking the more traditional intraoral x-rays, our Pano has the ability to create bite wings from its extra-oral scan.  This means that we can capture detailed pictures without having to place anything inside of your mouth.  At Cochran Dental we do still utilize the digital intraoral sensors, when possible, as they do produce a more focused and detailed image.

All radiographs done here at Cochran Dental utilize new digital sensors which require minimal exposure.  This means less radiation for both you the patient and for Dr. Cochran and the Staff, in fact the dosage is so low that you no longer have to wear any type of lead shielding.  We do keep this available and for any patient that ask to use a shield, it can be provided.  For instance a pregnant mother, a patient with a thyroid condition, or anyone who in the past has received high dose of radiation for treatment of cancer, should utilize a shield.

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” is available for patients that have anxiety during dental procedures.  Over time as you and Dr. Cochran get to know each other and you become more comfortable with receiving dental work the need for ‘the gas’ may become less.

If you elect to utilize Nitrous Oxide during your dental procedure, it will be given through a nasal hood.  The flow of the gas is carefully monitored by Dr. Cochran and the assistant.  Normal ‘room’ air contains around 20% Oxygen, the flow of Nitrous Oxide is mixed into pure Oxygen and creates a mix of up to 60% Nitrous to 40% Oxygen.  This is a far greater amount of Oxygen then what you normally breath so there is no concern of oxygen deprivation.  To begin the administration of the gases you will breath in the pure oxygen for a period of time to determine your flow volume, once this has been established Nitrous Oxide will be added to help create a more relaxed state.  Once we have established a completely relaxed state and your anxiety has left we will complete the dentistry.  During the dental procedure we may need to adjust the mix of gases, if this is necessary let us know.  Once all dental care is completed we will again have you breath pure oxygen for a period to clear your system.  Unlike full sedation you will be able to drive to and from the dental office and there is no requirement for continued monitoring after the completion of the dental care.

Rotary Endodontic Treatment

The ‘Dreaded Root Canal’ is not nearly so intimidating as it once was.  While nobody wants to volunteer for a Root Canal, when the need arises the use of motorized ‘endo’ files and faster fills greatly reduces the time and discomfort associated with traditional Endodontic treatment.  Utilizing a precision electric motor and specially designed and manufactured files, a cleaner and faster endodontic preparation is able to be completed.  These files are very flexible and are single use meaning that there is very little chance of a broken file.  In a matter of just minutes each canal can be cleaned and shaped to remove any necrotic tissue.  Once the canals are dried, a filling of rubber like material, known dentally as gutta purcha, is inserted into each canal.  This material is shaped to match the prepared canal and is warmed to allow it to flow into any accessory canals.  This results in a densely filled canal system with better results then the traditional methods.  Once the canals of the tooth are treated the access will be filled to ‘build up’ the tooth.  The final restoration of the tooth may be as simple as a filling or may require additional work to allow for placement of a crown over the root canal treated tooth.