by Dr Alistair Graham, Mona Vale Dental, NSW
The T-Scan is a digital occlusal analysis tool that records dynamic biting and shows the timing, force and position of individual contacts in occlusion and in function.
What’s good about it
It works very well at assessing a patient to show how their bite sits and any high spots. It’s a valuable aid to treatment planning and once the treatments are delivered, the T-Scan can be used again to ensure the forces are evenly balanced around the mouth.
While articulating paper is effective, it only shows the final result—it’s like a snapshot in time. When using the T-Scan, you can run the bite and see where and when the forces go through the teeth as they happen. The unit records the size of each force rather than relying on a large mark on a piece of articulating paper.
The handpiece is connected to the computer via a USB cable. The results appear immediately and are very accurate. Often the T-Scan provides minor occlusal analysis to areas that are so small, the patient wasn’t even aware there was a problem.
I use the T-Scan for every patient that needs a bruxism splint. There may be a high spot exacerbating the situation and if that can be relieved prior to starting an occlusal splint, that provides a head start on the case.
The T-Scan links directly and seamlessly with the Digital Smile Design app. When doing a full case, it’s really useful to have access to those records immediately.
What’s not so good
The mouthpiece on which the patient bites is single use so there’s some expense involved. While the T-Scan shows the position of the force and the high spot, it doesn’t indicate the force on the tooth. It’s still a good idea to go back and mark it with articulating paper.