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How to Choose Dental Loupes
Dental loupes are important equipment for the dentistry working fields. This article explains how to choose loupes?

Choose the correct magnification and working distance in order to ensure that you work in complete ergonomic harmony with your new loupe. Assuming the correct working posture reduces eye strain, back / shoulder / neck tension, and the related stress-induced headaches. Less known but no less important is the psychological impact: good ergonomics improve information processing and decision-making.

The following important factor when you choose the dental loupe

- The magnification of loupe
- Workding distance
- The size of glasses frames
- The field of view
- The depth of view
- Compare with prescription lenses
- The weight of the loupes

The magnification
The level of magnification used is most often based on personal preferences. However, there are a few guidelines which could help in choosing the best magnification for your specific needs. Choose the lowest comfortable magnification level, as this would provide the widest field of view. Experience shows that the most commonly used and recommended magnification for loupes in different dental fields are as follows:

  •  Specialty Magnification General dentistry, Dental hygiene, Implantology: 2.5x .3.0x. 3.5x
  •  Endo, Crown and Bridge work: 3.5x - 4.0x
  •  Lab work, Technician: 4.0x . 5.0x .6.0x

  • If you need a large depth of field, choose a loupe between 2.5x and 3.5x magnifications. These have the largest depth of field ranges and are the most commonly chosen magnifications. Most hygienists and dentists doing routine work will choose a loupe in this category.
    If you are doing very fine work such as small surgeries or root canals, choose a loupe between 4x and 6x magnification. You may also decide to use a loupe with 8x magnification, but this is only a good idea if you have experience with using loupes as the depth of field and working area are very, very small for these (about the size of a fingertip). The working area for 4x-6x loupes range from the size of a silver dollar to the size of a nickel.

    The working distance
    The working distance refers to the distance between your eyes, and the patient's mouth. You can measure this while assuming your normal working position, making sure you are comfortable, that your back is straight, and that you are not leaning forward too much. Perhaps you could ask someone to assist you in this procedure. You can also use the following table to help determine the best working distance for your personal needs:

  •  Height <170 cm (5ft 7 in) 170-190 cm (5ft 7 in to 6ft 4 in) >190 cm (6ft 4 in)
  •  Sitting 340 mm (14 in) 420 mm (16 in) 500 mm (20 in)
  •  Standing 420 mm (16 in) 500 mm (20 in) 550 mm (22in)

  • The size of glasses frames.
    There are three figures listed on the side of the frame
  •  the first number is the width of the lenses
  •  the second is the bridge distance, or distance between the lenses
  •  the third is the full length of the temple/arm (including the part that goes behind your ear)

  • There are also 2 numbers not shown on the frame, TOTAL WIDTH and LENS HEIGHT
    The LENS HEIGHT is the distance from the highest point on the top to the lowest point on the bottom of the lens. If you are buying progressive or bifocal, we suggest you pick a frame with lens height more than 30mm so it has enough space to contain both distance vision portion and reading portion. 
    The TOTAL WIDTH of the frame is the distance between the 2 temples when measuring from inside of the glasses.

    The field of view.
    The field of view is the area that is visible and in focus, while looking through the loupes. A larger field of view is preferred, as there is a larger area visible through the loupes, and there is less need to move your head around .The size of the "field of view" also corresponds directly to the magnification factor.
  •  Simply stated: A loupe with a lower magnification factor, will have a larger field of view, and vice versa. All loupes utilize high performance lens systems that provide an extra wide field of view (up to 125mm / 4.9 inch)
  • .

    The depth of view.
    The depth of field is the depth of the area that is visible & in focus, while looking through the loupes. A larger depth of field is preferred, as there is a deeper area visible through the loupes. The size of the "depth of field" corresponds directly to the "working distance".
  •  A loupe with a longer working distance, will have a larger depth of field, and vice versa. The size of the "depth of field" also corresponds directly to the magnification factor
  •  A loupe with a lower magnification factor, will have a larger depth of field, and vice versa. All loupes utilize high performance lens systems that provide an extra large depth of field (up to 120mm / 4.7 inch)

  • Compare with prescription lenses
    If you use glasses with prescription lenses, it is important that you have the option of fitting your loupes frames with the correct prescription. Otherwise, the loupes will not perform according to specifications. The standard frames, can easily be fitted with prescription lenses by your optician. Loupes are also available in a "clip-on" option, which can be clipped on to your regular glasses.

    The weight of the loupes. Weight is an important factor when choosing a new loupe. Especially if the loupe is to be used for longer periods of time. Lightweight loupes are more comfortable, and in the long term, will reduce tension and other complications. Ultra light weight loupes, offer the maximal comfort. All loupes utilize extremely light weight materials.
  •  Loupes weigh as little as 42 grams (not including frame)
  •  Regarding the Kelper loupes, these loupes are heavy. Look for the headband style, which will be comfortable for using a long time.

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