3D printers produce single crowns, bridges or full arches with tolerances of 50 micrometres. Already in use in laboratories, digital dentistry will evolve and become more available. Multi-practice corporations are expected to show interest in controlling their production costs.
3D printers and digital dentistry promise greater accuracy and efficiency current systems found around Australia. (These CAD/CAM machines known as CEREC, produce ‘while-you-wait crowns’ from a digital scan, milling the product from a single block of material.) The cost of these printers estimated in the 6-figure range, means digital dentistry won’t appear in smaller businesses any time soon. In the meantime, however, crowns and bridges continue to offer the best solutions for specific problems.
Traditionally, dentists produce a model of the client’s arch – upper, lower, or both – and manufacturing is done offsite. Today, overseas labs offer increasingly rapid turn-around including international delivery, and can nearly match local production times.
At Bli Bli Smiles, we have a great relationship with local technicians and can liaise with them for particular requirements. Our dentists value being able to discuss particular solutions with the person who will make the crown. The lab we use is dedicated to quality materials and processes. So, should problems present with the final product, fit or colour etc, adjustments are made free of charge and within a day or two. The last thing anyone wants in this scenario is further delay and costs associated with international delivery.