A special light probe now enables dentists to quickly recognize the extent of caries in a patient’s tooth and selectively remove it. The examination using the small, slim Facelight light probe from W&H Dentalwerk Bürmoos GmbH is based on a simple principle: The bacteria that cause caries leave behind metabolic products that fluoresce red when exposed to violet light, whereas healthy tooth substance appears green.
Bayer MaterialScience facilitates the high-contrast differentiation between red and green fluorescence when viewing the area to be treated through a filter disc made of the transparent polycarbonate Makrolon LQ3187. The plastic is specially colored to filter out a specific portion of the violet excitation light. The dentist can easily detect and selectively excavate the carious locations in the opened cavity, which fluoresce red, while preserving healthy tooth substance.
Despite all the modern methods for personal dental hygiene, many people still suffer from caries. The actual extent of the infected area is not always readily apparent to the naked eye. The only solution in such cases is often more extensive treatment. Using the light probe, even slight caries infections can be detected and removed via a minimally invasive procedure. This provides the tooth with temporary protection against a renewed flare up of caries. The probe supports the dentist throughout the entire procedure. The name Facelight is derived from the FACE method, or Fluorescence Aided Caries Excavation.
With Makrolon LQ3187, W&H Dentalwerk Bürmoos selected a highly transparent material with outstanding optical properties. The plastic is further characterized by very good breaking strength and impact toughness. High-performance compounds that do not require any complex preparatory steps are available for both injection molding and extrusion processing.