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Photography for the whole team

6 June 2014

Photography for the whole team

Clinical photography may be an essential part of modern dentistry, but it is a skill that also needs to be advanced and refined through practice.

Delivering a recent session at the BDA Conference and Exhibition was Dr Julian Caplan: a renowned publisher and lecturer, past president of the BACD and the only dentist in the world to have passed the BACD accreditation exam using CAD/CAM technology. Speaking to a large and highly captivated audience, he demonstrated why taking good quality photographs is so important.

During his presentation, Dr Caplan highlighted the role of photography in treatment acceptance and uptake, as well as communication with the lab and the patient. It is an important tool for all members of the team for efficient record keeping too. Images should include the lips, rather than just teeth, to provide a broader view for enhanced aesthetics and to give an idea about the mid-line smile, facial symmetry and the conjunctiva buccal corridor. Photos not only improve the treatment explanation, but can also help the patient to identify the key aspects they would like to change, leading to a co-diagnosis and enhanced patient consent. 

On a practical level, it’s also important to understand the various camera settings and what to do if your camera doesn’t work. Dr Caplan discussed all the camera basics such as camera types, plus pixels, pip, type of images, F-stop and aperture, while offering practical trouble-shooting advice. Case studies were then used to show delegates the most common mistakes and how they could avoid them. 

In conclusion, this was a lively presentation from an animated speaker, suitable for the whole team, with equal weight given to technical knowledge and hands-on techniques.

The BACD Annual Conference will be held at the ACC in Liverpool Thursday 6th - Saturday 8th November 2014. To find out more call 0207 612 4166 or visit


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