Photography Allows Technician to Take Full Advantage of New Advances in Ceramics

Advances in porcelain properties of opalescence, fluorescence, translucency and opacity have given the technician and practitioner the ability to match natural dentition more readily than ever before. Technicians have a greater selection and a wider range of porcelain powders to achieve natural results. Communicating the patient's tooth color to the laboratory technician has now become the most important link in successful shade matching.

Photographic Communication Achieves Natural Results.

High Quality Photography is the best tool we have for color communication. We have found intra-oral video camera printouts and Polaroid photos to be inadequate for communicating shade. To properly compose your picture, it is important to include the shade tab within the frame of the close-up photo. The tab should be in the same plane as the tooth (both tooth and tab should be the same distance from the flash) so that the flash illuminates both the tooth and the tab equally.

If you use a digital camera, then send digital image files to the following email address:

If you use a 35-mm camera, then send the exposed roll of film with your case, and we will develop the slides or prints for you.

Photograph Stumps Veneer Preps Disappearing Margins Characterizations & Hidden Areas

When bonding porcelain veneers, stump shade photos are crucial for the technician who must decide when to use clear porcelain for disappearing margins, opaceous porcelain for hiding dark under-structure, or more chromatic porcelain for extra color. Additionally, internal and surface characterizations can only be communicated properly by high quality digital or 35-mm photography. Written descriptions and drawings depicting characterizations, as well as intra-oral video camera printouts and Polaroid photos are inadequate for communicating shade. High quality photography is the best tool we have for color communication.


A properly composed photo showing both the tooth and the shade tab in the same photograph is your best tool for communicating crucial visual information to the laboratory. Intra-oral video, camera printouts, Polaroid photos, written descriptions and drawings are of limited use for shade communication.

Digital Cameras

The Canon G5 or the PhotoMed C-4000, with special Close-up Attachment kits available from , take digital dental photos that rival 35-mm photography.

Send your digital image files to the following email address: