The Wand® Computer Guided Anesthesia System: What is it?
One of the most common forms of dental phobia is a fear of needles or injections. This type of phobia can make dental treatment very difficult for obvious reasons. Many types of treatment rely on anaesthetic injections to numb the patient. If the patient is not comfortable receiving injections, it means that the required treatment can often not be completed.
The Wand is essentially a computer-controlled dental injection. The flow rate of the local anaesthetic is controlled by a computer. This means that the injection is guaranteed to be slow and steady and therefore comfortable.
Even though Milestone Scientific – the manufacturers of the Wand – now call their products CompuDent and STA (Single Tooth Anesthesia) System, we’ll still call it the Wand here – because a lot of people with needle phobia describe it as their “Magic Wand”!
Most people who have had a bad experience with injections think that needles sting because the skin is pierced, but this is usually not so! Most often, the sting was caused because the anesthetic was fired in too quickly. Obviously, it is possible for the dentist to control the speed with a standard syringe, but the idea of the Wand is to take out the “human error”. This can be very reassuring for people with previous bad experiences.
What can you expect with The Wand?
The first thing you can expect is to smile as The Wand is a computer unit and looks like a modern piece of equipment, unlike an old fashioned syringe
You’ll notice that your dentist will look more comfortable using The Wand handpiece, as it is simply held like a pen.
You might not even know you’ve had an injection – that’s what some patients say – "When are you going to do it?
There will be no numbness of the tongue, cheek or lip.You return to your routine able to drink and smile.
You can expect to be so happy that you tell all your friends and neighbours about your great experience at the dentist.
What are the advantages?
Looks non-threatening and almost cute. Researchers have found that the Wand induces less anxiety than any other injection method (Kudo et al, 2001).
The precise control of flow rate and pressure reliably produces a comfortable injection even in potentially more “difficult” areas like the palate, where the tissue is less elastic.
Many dentists enjoy the light weight and easy handling. The penlike grasp allows the operator to rotate the handpiece, which can make it easier to glide the needle into the tissue.