Your Dentistry Questions Answered
Welcome to the Smiles Centre dental hub, this is our dedicated page for sharing our news and answering all your questions. You can post questions to us by commenting on an existing post or by getting in touch by email, Facebook or by phone. We are always looking to answer as many questions as possible so please don't be shy, get involved and, if you find something you like then share it with your friends.
It’s taken a while but we are finally entering a new age of dental technology with the use of laser scanning and 3D printing. All our trial test cases have been completed and we are now rolling this service out to all our patients. So if you want a new denture that is digitally designed with pixel perfect accuracy just give us a call! see older posts on digital dentistry or view our denture page >>here<<
A few months ago Martyn Cox, our implant dentist placed 2 implants in the lower jaw of one of patient (Mr A) and 4 implants in to the top jaw of another (Mr B). Everything went well as usual and the gums had healed up within a few weeks for both men. The implants are under the gum tissue at this stage and cannot be seen, they are very small and have a tiny thread set at the top. They are left covered for a few months for the bone to integrate with the titanium screw. The implants are constantly checked over this period to make sure everything is going well. Once set in place, the implants are exposed and then next stage is added, this is called the abutment, shown here in gold. Martyns now hands the patients over to me, a clinical dental technician, to make and fit the dentures. I adjusted the existing dentures to fit over the newly exposed abutments so both mr a and mr can wear their dentures until the new ones are completed. For mr a, i used a soft silicone lining material to help with comfort (I usually do this for all lower dentures and sometimes with the top ones too).
Special trays are made to fit over the supporting gums and abutments which i use to take silicone impressions. A small impression pickup is placed on top of the abutments before i take the impression so that i can located them later. The impressions are cast and the dentures are made. both dentures are constructed on a chrome frame work, which gives the denture strength and makes the profile much smaller. The denture cap as shown on the right, is set into the denture during denture construction and then a retention ring is used to help the denture clip into place. the retention rings come in different strengths so we can swap them out very quickly to find the right strength. these retention rings are replaceable too which is quick and easy, so if the implant becomes loose, we can just change it for a new one.
I fitted both dentures today and both fitted really well and looked fantastic. Two happy customers! And a happy me, there is nothing quite like the satisfaction you get from a job well done 😀
If you or someone you know is interested in having dental implants, just give us a call, the initial consultation is free and we,ll sit down with you to assess what you need and how much it is likely to cost. It doesn’t take long and there is no obligation to buy. Have a look at our implant page >>here<< for more information and our denture page >>here<<
The actual possibilities of this technology have become more evident the more i think about what i’m going to be able to achieve that I’ve never been able to do before; Traditional method of a metal framework requires the fabrication of a wax pattern in real time. wax is a very versatile material but also very difficult to master which takes years of training to get it just right. Digital on the other hand, offers the unique ability to zoom in, to create incredible detail and if it goes wrong? Edit Undo!
Another massive benefit is reproducibility, if the wax pattern that is printed gets damaged or miss cast during processing, we just print another. Maybe the patient would like two exact copies, previously we would have had to do everything all over again, which is a huge cost to the patient, and even then, the second copy would never be exactly the same as the first. With a printer, it’s identical.
It’s not just the dental industry thats moving on in leaps and bounds either, I watched the news last night on BBC1 and witnessed a world first facial reconstruction of the very same technology.
BBC NEWS – Worlds first 3D printed surgery
Please share your thoughts by posting a comment below!
A New Era In Dental Technology
A few months ago my team and I visited the Dental Technology Show at the NEC Birmingham and were dazzled by all the fantastic new technology that was being presented this year. But there was one piece of equipment that really caught my eye, a scanning technology by dental wings. The dental wings scanner is a fairly small unit which has a sliding door at the front and inside sits an unsuspecting set of instruments; a small rotating table and digital laser. Now this isn’t new technology, as such, but after being given a demonstration I quickly realised how advanced the technology is.
Here’s how it works; We take an impression of the mouth, cast the impression with plaster as usual and from there we would normally start to design a wax pattern for casting a metal denture frame work. This is very labour intensive, very messy and extremely difficult and requires a registered dental technician. however, with this scanner, you can simply place the model inside, press a button and the lasers digitise the plaster model into an incredibly accurate 3D vector image. but that’s not the best part, next the computer program blocks out all the undercuts and designs a the chrome frame work and all in the blink of an eye. Up until now, I’ve never seen this or even heard of it. Before, after the model had been scanned, it was someone’s job to then start designing the metal frame which as you can imagine, takes a lot of time, skill and knowledge. So I was blown away and completely sold. But that’s not all! this scanner can also crown and bridge patterns, implant bars and placement guides. This is great for all of the team here at the Smiles Centre because we are doing more implant work that ever before and the trend for people to be having implants doesn’t seem to be slowing down. As you can imagine, this sort of technology doesn’t come cheap and its certainly wouldn’t save me money, at least not for a good few years but, I brought it anyway. Why? Simply because I know that it will allow us to give our patients the very best of care, and we all deserve that, each and every one of us.
Have any questions or thought on this subject? I love to here them, post a comment below.
The human body has evolved to eat a variety of food and whether you decide to eat meat or vegetables, our teeth and jaws are designed to eat both.
If we look at dogs teeth we can see that they are very sharp but we can also see that the teeth lock together when the jaws are closed. IF you observe a dog eating you will notice that the lower jaw just goes up and down whilst eating. Now, if we look at cows teeth we will see that the teeth are quite blunt and even more obvious is the way the lower jaw moves as the cow eats. It’s a very exaggerated rotational movement and the tough abrasive diet of the cow is ground finely before it is swallowed as opposed to a dog which swallows large chunks of soft digestible meat. Us humans vary in the way we eat. Some of us eat like cows, some like dogs and others eat with a combination of both.
Most problems with dentures are caused by the way we eat. It is relatively easy to make a denture that fits a persons mouth but, getting the denture to stay in place while the person eats is the difficult part, especially if that person eats like a cow with a rotational movement as this can cause the dentures to tip.
There are many techniques that we use to reduce the tipping of dentures whilst eating and it all comes down to the placement of the acrylic teeth and shaping them in such a way that minimises tipping. As a clinician providing dentures, I always prefer the patient that eats like a Dog!
Eating like a dog has its own problems too because denture do not last long if they are used to tear food. I guess the perfect patient for me would be one that eats like a mouse, taking small nibbles!
What are your thoughts on this subject?