The most intriguing applications of 3D printing in dental procedures

The most intriguing applications of 3D printing in dental procedures

Just like fingerprints, every set of teeth is unique. This is why the dental issues of different people vary accordingly. Everyone needs a customized solution. 3D printing in dental applications is becoming more and more popular because of this technology has the advantage to rapidly produce custom designs. Stereolithography also produces different models at high resolutions that are perfect for the orthodontic models. This article is going to focus on the top 3D printing in dental applications at present and it includes up and coming developments in the industry as well.

Crowns and Bridges

A very common orthodontic procedure is using crowns and bridges for correcting the damaged or missing teeth. The dentists make use of a wide range of materials for prosthodontics and some of the more common of them include metal alloys and ceramics. The direct metal printing is restricted to the costly DMLS systems; there are more cost-efficient solutions that exist along with castable materials as well. The verification of the fittings of the prosthetic before cementing them to the patient is extremely important. After scanning a patient’s mouth, there is a dental model resin system that allows in producing a 3D model of the patient’s teeth for testing the fittings of prosthodontics components. The dental model resin is perfectly optimized for ensuring the accuracy required in orthodontics.

Surgical guides

While dental drilling, it is important to ensure a high degree of precision because hitting the wrong nerve will cause extreme discomfort for the patient. Worst case scenario is it can also cause partial paralysis. With the help of 3D printing in dental, the trained and experienced surgeons can improve patient outcome and overall reliability of this process is also increased. The usage of 3D printing in dental procedures is completely sterilizable for creating functional guides. A scan is done of the patient’s teeth and then the guides are created in a model for accommodating metal drilling inserts. During the surgery, the guide is placed on the patient’s teeth and then it is used for drilling. It results in greater reliability as well.

Direct printed orthodontics

It is true that the current workflows for creating orthodontic devices like retainers and splints are multi-step, which initially requires a mold to be made of the teeth and then the final retainer needs to be created by thermoforming. This process can be simplified by allowing the direct production of orthodontic devices. With the help of 3D printing in dental industry, the dentists can save a lot of money if the processes can be implemented instead of choosing a dental laboratory. If it is implemented in-house, the skilled staff can produce dental implants and it can prove to be a good investment.

The patients can save a lot of money. A traditional crown can cost a patient almost $1200 or more. While a 3D printer lowers the overhead costs by saving 80%. The dentists can pass this savings on to their patients. With 3D printing in dental industry, the services have become much faster and more accurate as well. The manual model making is time-consuming. On the other hand, 3D printing allows in creating multiple appliances to be printed at once. Thus, accuracy is improved all at once.