Dental lighting is one of the most impactful features of an operatory and necessary for dental professionals to provide high quality care. Overhead operatory lighting has been a fixture in offices for ages. However, dental professionals are now recognizing that the quality of light is just as valuable as loupes. One major consideration has not changed: proper illumination to enhance performance is needed during treatment.
Early dental chair, Pioneer West Museum in Shamrock, Texas
Disadvantages of overhead lights
Overhead lights are typically mounted on the ceiling, wall, or connected to a dental unit. One of the main problems with this lighting system is that it can cast a shadow in the working field of the oral cavity. This means a dentist must find the proper position to view the working area of the oral cavity without compromising his/her back, neck, and wrist. When an overhead light is inadequate, it can also cause headache, eyestrain, and painful neck injuries. Overhead lights can indirectly cure and set restorations prematurely and do not offer a non-cure setting.
Benefits of loupe lights
Loupe lights provide high quality illumination, but also allows a dentist to be comfortable by allowing proper ergonomic options. Loupe lights can be adjusted to a preferred level of brightness and beam uniformity. Advanced technology has allowed loupe lights to be a preferred essential tool for surgical procedures like endodontics, implant dentistry, and even restorative dentistry.
If you are considering replacing an overhead light for a loupe light, it is important to consider features like weight, battery life, beam size, and power level. A light weight loupe light will be beneficial because of increased comfort on the bridge of the nose and decreases the strain on the forehead. Battery life should be long lasting and run for many hours at high power without causing an interruption. A loupe light should offer optimal beam size to illuminate the oral cavity without dimming, and settings for proper shade matching. Power level should be user dependent and give the clinician an option based on personal preference.
Featherlight™ LED Headlight System
Professionals will benefit from the Featherlight™ LED Headlight System made by Ultra Light Optics. This lightweight headlight offers all of the beneficial applications that a loupe light should encompass, but also is crafted with a hands free technology that is a huge improvement in dentistry. This hands free, touch sensor is beneficial to all practitioners, especially to help implement infection control. The ultra light weight body is compact, weighing only 2 grams, which provides maximum comfort. Currently, most loupe lights on the market can range 10-15 grams.
Made for complete freedom of motion and maximum comfort:
- Encompasses an ideal beam intensity of 3600 foot candles
- Superior grade materials to provide great fit and comfort
- Long lasting lithium-ion battery pack without replacement (8-16 hours on the light setting)
- Hands free technology - touch sensor can activate with wrist or elbow
- Power level based on user’s choice
By Dr. Anand, DDS | firstname.lastname@example.org