A Brief Idea About Digital Dentistry and The Latest Digital Dental Technology

A Brief I…

Digital Dentistry – An Introduction

The term ‘digital dentistry’ has gained much prominence in the recent times although very few people possess the basic idea about it. Digital dentistry is a broad term in itself and encompasses a lot of things; it refers to almost any dental technology that involves usage of components of a computer like hardware devices and software solutions. The objective of digital dentistry is quite simple – it is meant to enable dentists and dental professionals to provide quality treatment using computer aided equipments and tools. For example digital scanning makes mechanical tools obsolete in contemporary dentistry as it enables dentists take impressions, carry out diagnosis and prepare treatment plans without intervention of any mechanical tool. In dental labs there are digital solutions like impression scanners and design software which reduce manual labour in creating dental products. These digital innovations not only speed up the process of creating various dental products but also ensure greater precision in those products.

Digital dentistry is not a standalone solution in itself and rather it has a lengthy history that dates back to the 1980s when CAD/CAM (abbreviations for computer aided design and computer aided manufacturing) technology was first applied to take dental impressions. Since then a number of dental professionals from across various countries around the world have not only invented but also applied for patents an array of digital dental solutions. Each of these contributions has certainly helped optimising the overall process of dental treatments.

However everything is not as rosy as you may imagine on the ground level. Dentists not only in the UK alone but also everywhere else in the world as well are taking time to adopt digital technology in dentistry. A research conducted recently says nearly 85% of dental practices around the world still make use of the conventional approach to take impressions using an impression tray.

Digital Technologies in The World Of Dentistry

Digital technologies related to dentistry which are available for dental labs and clinics serve a range of purposes. Some of these technologies include scanning, imaging, 3D printing, milling digital designing and others and most of these technologies have developed on their own but it is important to note that these elements complement one another in a big way on a number of aspcts including treatment planning, design and delivery of final products, etc.

Some of the latest and popular digital dental processes and scanning technologies include intraoral or impression scanning and supporting software solutions; this entire range of products contributes heavily in boosting both the strength or durability and aesthetic quotient of various dental restorations. Moreover these digital dental processes and scanning technologies have lowered the cost of treatments while improving efficiency and success rate of treatments for dental practices.

Let us now explore how an impression taking digital equipment works and how it actually helps dentists and support staffs in a practice. This effort will help understanding the topic in hand more clearly.

Digital Dentistry and The Scanning Equipment

Based on how and where a digital scanner is used in a dental practice the range of equipments can be broadly divided into two categories explains an oral health professional in London who deals with digital dental technology over the years. The equipment may either face the patient or could be used in a dental lab where it does not face the patient. As far as scanning equipments found in dental practices are concerned, those can be divided into two main categories – CBCT or intraoral scanners.

Dental Cone Beam CT scanners are basically CBCT scanners and are mainly used to capture impressions of the mouth whereas intraoral scanners or 3D dental scanners replace the conventional approach of taking impressions and patients have to sit before this range of scanners with a gooey impression material in their mouth which brings out a precise and accurate impression. It is even possible to combine the two types of scan together when needed as in full denture treatments.  

Polygons are the building blocks of intraoral scans and that can be combined easily with an image that is clicked by an intraoral camera. The result of this effort is a highly realistic 3D imagery representation of the dentition of a patient, explains a dentist who is involved with digital dentistry near me over the years. This 3D image can be seen on screens of both a laptop and a tablet and moreover it enables a dentist visualise even the tiniest problem or defect present in the teeth. The image even shows other parts of a cavity that is just not possible to see with naked eyes. Even some scanners are capable of detecting caries in the initial stages and thus preventive steps are easier to adopt to prevent further development.

Digital scanners meant for dental labs are also capable to scan a physical space and show it in a 3D imagery representation.  But it captures physical impressions or dental models of the teeth and the gums rather than live situations of the mouth. These physical impressions or dental models help further processing, correction and manufacturing of various dental products.

Application of CAD CAM Technologies in Digital Dentistry

CAD CAM technologies (shortened forms of Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacturing respectively) are basically software solutions and the range of applications is not only used in dentistry but also in several other industries, like automotive industry for example. According to a busy dentist in Wandsworth who possesses years of experience in handling patients using digital dentistry technologies CAD CAM technologies prove helpful in several aspects including intraoral scanning, creating a digital dental design along with its milling or printing. Last but nevertheless the least it even contributes handsomely in implementing the solution into the mouth of a patient.

Interestingly, the entire procedure may take as little as 40 minutes and a single visit to your treatment is sufficient. It is already a proven fact that CAD CAM solutions like usage of dental design software and scanning, etc. not only make treatments more precise and accurate but also faster, and cheaper thus minimising overheads on both dental practices and their patients.

The entire range of dental professionals including dentists, lab technicians, specialists and even dental nurses and support staffs can make use of this dental software to create restorations or prostheses like inlays and on lays, crowns, veneers, bridges and dentures, etc. These digital tools also aid creating dental designs and to work smoothly on dental treatment planning. 

Now that we have some initial idea about what dental technology deals with in this ongoing digital age we can say the range of solutions contributes heavily in planning, designing and manufacturing in a speedy and predictable way at 1A Orthodontics London which proves easier for patients to asses.


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