Can you imagine going in to your dentist with no teeth and coming out with a complete set of dentures in less than an hour?
That may be the future for dentures, and the not-too-distant future, either. The first prototypes are being built today.
The first step in print-on-demand denture manufacturing is getting an accurate image of your mouth. An Israeli research team claims to have mastered this step.
Currently, dental impressions for dentures and many other types of restorations are made using plaster casts. You have to bite down into a tray of wet “plaster” (these days actually a plastic or silicone mold compound) and hold your teeth still until it sets, which can be a problem for people who either have difficulty biting down into the impression material or who are sensitive to the mold compound and may gag. It is often done separately for top and bottom impressions.
Digital impressions are much simpler. A single plate that integrates digital cameras and a pressure sensing plate can not only collect data on the entire mouth at once, it can reveal important information about pressures in the mouth, which may be used to create better-fitting and more comfortable dentures.
The next challenge is printing dentures. Current CAD/CAM procedures rely on milling individual elements from blocks of source material, which can take a considerable amount of time. This makes them unsuitable for large jobs, such as making a set of porcelain veneers, although they are great for individual crowns or porcelain inlays.
3D printing, by building the denture all at once as an integral structure, may be able to complete the restoration much more quickly. It has also shown considerable promise in manufacturing everything from clothes to homes, so it seems that dentures should be within the capability of the technology.
However, digital imaging and printing of dentures is not available yet. We do offer the latest technology in denture imaging and manufacture. Our quality dental lab will ensure your dentures have the best fit possible, which can reduce denture pain, improve function, and increase the longevity of your dentures.
To learn more about your options for getting high-quality dentures today, please contact Dental Excellence of Blue Bell in Philadelphia, today.
Dental Excellence of Blue Bell