Why should I invest in dental loupes?
As a team of dentists and surgeons, we all use loupes in our daily work. We all agree that loupes are one of the most essential tools that we have to ensure that we can deliver high quality, safe and predictable care for our patients.
We explore the top 5 reasons that we use loupes.
1. Improved Visual Acuity
Whether you’re a dentist, surgeon, vet or beautician, seeing microscopic details without magnification is challenging. Dental loupes provide a detailed, magnified view of the object you’re observing so that even small details are easy to see.
Loupes have been scientifically proven to enhance visual acuity – for example in endodontics, where loupes have been show to improve the success rates of endodontic procedures (1).
2. Improved Posture
Long periods of work, combined with poor posture and insufficient vision and lighting can cause anyone to develop neck and back pain. It is common knowledge that dentists experience a high degree of musculoskeletal pain as a result of their occupation, and a recent study shows that this finding is consistent with up to 70% of dentists (2).
Loupes force the user to adopt the correct posture, ensuring longterm health. This occurs due to two reasons. Firstly, the operator does not now need to lean towards the patient to see better, as the loupes provide a magnified view. Secondly, should the operator lean in towards the patient, the loupes will blur, due to range over which they focus. All loupes are set to a range of focus (otherwise known as working distance) which allows the operator to work with the correct posture.
Statistics have shown that up to a third of dentists retire early due to musculoskeletal problems (3). Therefore, loupes are a fantastic investment for your longterm health and to protect your income whilst working. If you need to take a week off work due to back pain, for most people that will cost more than the price of loupes.
3. Improved Diagnosis
Correct diagnosis relies on good observation and the correct clinical tests. As a result of the magnified view that loupes provide, the operator can see fine details not usually visible using the naked eye, improving their diagnostic capabilities.
4. Reduced Eye Strain
Concentrating on small objects for prolonged periods of times typically results in eyestrain. This can present itself as sore eyes, headaches and general fatigue.
By providing a magnified image, your eyes do not need to strain to see what you’re doing. Coupling your loupes with a headlight also reduces strain, by providing an illuminated view of your working field.
5. Reduced Appointment Lengths
By increasing the amount that you can see, loupes allow you to work more efficiently in a shorter time period. For example, locating fine root canal orificies becomes a straightforward (and far less stressful!) task.