Dental Loupes Shopping Part 2: Important Characteristics To Consider

This is the continuation of the four-part blog series about the different important characteristics, factors, or features that you need to look into when shopping for loupes. In this second part, we are going to discuss the angle of declination and working distance.

In the first part, we have identified and discussed in detail the first set of factors such as the field of view or width of field, weight, and depth of field or depth of view.

Working Distance

Dental loupes are manufactured with varied working distance. The working distance is the distance between the eyes of the user and the mouth of the patient. Choosing the right working distance will allow you to work on any dental procedures comfortably and in an upright position regardless of whether you are sitting or standing.

The right working distance will also help reduce muscular pains like a backache, shoulder stress, and neck pain which you normally experience when working for extended periods of time without dental loupes. Also, dental optical loupes with the right working distance allow you to see the object that you are working on or your focused area without the need for you to bend forward or to lean closer to your patient's mouth and hold such position until you have completed the task that you are doing.  

To get your working distance, find your comfortable working position while standing or sitting straight in an upright position, and then slightly bend your head down. Measure the distance between your eyes and the opening of the mouth or the lower bridge of the nose of your patient. This measurement will be your working distance.

To get your accurate working distance, you can perhaps ask someone to assist you in taking the measurement. You can likewise use the standard measurements:

 - For someone whose height is 5'7" or 170 cm, the standard working distances are 340 mm or 14 inches when in sitting position and 420 mm or 16 inches when in a standing position.

 - For someone whose height is 5' 7" to 6' 4" or 170-190 cm, the standard working distances are 420 mm mm or 16 inches when in sitting position and 500 mm or 20 inches when in a standing position.

 - For someone whose height is over 6' 4" or 190 cm, the standard working distances are 500 mm or 20 inches when in sitting position and 550 mm or 22 inches when in a standing position.

Angle of Declination

The angle of declination is the angle that the eyes of the dental loupe user are inclined downward towards the patient's mouth or the work area. In order to attain a comfortable and upright working position, you must pick the loupe with a steep angle of declination. 20 degrees or less angle of declination is preferred as it allows minimal forward head posture.

This concludes the second part of this blog series. In the next two parts of the series will discuss other important factors like the magnification level, quality of the optics and frame, interpupillary distance or pupillary distance, resolution, design, and types of dental loupes.  

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