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PFM. Relevant or Relic?

Relevant or Relic?
If current trends hold, PFMs may become obsolete
Allison M. DiMatteo, BA, MPS, and Kathryn Latanyshyn, BA, MLIS
With continuous developments in material science and technology, dentistry keeps evolving and embracing innovative ways to ensure patients receive the best in oral healthcare. In the process, some professionals may bid farewell to the methods and materials that have been the traditional “go to” choices. In recent years, the treatment modality falling repeatedly to the wayside is the traditional porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) restoration.
In a 2013 survey conducted by Lab Management Today, 40% of respondents reported a decline in PFM fabrications, although fewer than 10 years earlier, respondents noted that nearly 85% of all crown and bridge work completed was metal-based. Perhaps directly related, 60% of these same survey participants reported a significant increase in the use of pressable lithium disilicate (IPS e.max®, Ivoclar Vivadent, www.ivoclarvivadent.com) over the past 2 years, and nearly 50% reported an increase in the use of zirconia layering ceramic.1
Additionally, approximately 15% of all dentists today have a CAD/CAM system within the practice. According to Michael Augins, president of Sirona Dental, Inc., when in-office CAD/CAM is used, all the materials available for those systems are metal-free ceramics. Therefore, 15% of dental restorations will be non-PFM and metal-free based on in-office CAD/CAM usage. “But the truth is, about 70% of all laboratories fabricate restorations through CAD/CAM,” he adds.
If the PFM market is waning and patient concerns about and desires for esthetic restorations are answered with easier, quicker fabrication methods (eg, in-office and/or laboratory/milling center CAD/CAM systems), then dental teams and laboratories alike must be prepared to adopt new approaches for delivering case-specific treatments.
“As we move from analog to digital, from metal to metal-free, and from handmade […]

By |July 25th, 2014|Categories: Articles||0 Comments

3D Systems Projet 1200

Quickly and economically print micro-SLA, detailed parts for casting, prototyping and end-use parts.

By |June 20th, 2014|Categories: Design, Digital Transition, Videos||0 Comments

Here Come the Millennials

Here Come the Millennials
Familiarity with cutting-edge technologies allow new dental graduates to pursue a different path than their predecessors
By Ellen Meyer
Since the turn of the millennium, new dentists entering practice have shown themselves to be different than earlier generations. Digital natives who have grown up with computers, as well as ever-smarter phones and devices, they are more at home with technology—using intraoral cameras, digital scanners, and devices to immediately transmit pertinent case information to team members, including staff, collaborating specialists, and laboratory technicians. They also communicate differently, and are completely at home sharing information via social media, SMS texting, and email. Even to the most casual observer they are noticeably different. This group of dentists is more culturally diverse than groups in the past, and nearly 50% of new graduates are now female.
These younger dentists also face different challenges than their predecessors. The global recession of 2008, the advent of corporate dentistry, the demands of dental insurance, and the skyrocketing cost of dental school have left many struggling under an unprecedented burden of debt without the clear path to prosperity followed by earlier generations.
Given the current scenario, these millennial dentists tend to have different needs, expectations, and working styles than their more experienced counterparts. There is little tolerance for the glitches that were par for the course in the past. They need to work efficiently with all dental team members to be profitable in the face of new practice realities and patient expectations. This means finding ways to deliver consistent quality in a shorter timeframe, and expanding communication capabilities to avert negative outcomes, extra chairtime, and disgruntled patients. For laboratory owners wanting to cultivate and retain customers from this crop of dentists, the ability […]

By |June 17th, 2014|Categories: Articles||0 Comments

Key Concepts for More Effective Treatment Presentation

Grow your practice by understanding the value of your treatment plans
Jay M. Geier
Practitioners who have succeeded in their efforts to bring more patients into the practice must next face a second hurdle in growing their practice—improving case presentation.
Using great case presentation techniques to clarify treatment goals and elements is critical to patients and practitioners. But it is first important to address some misunderstandings dentists often have about presenting their best treatment recommendations. These insights and techniques can dramatically increase a clinician’s ability to more consistently convince patients to accept the treatment they need.
Although many practitioners are put off by the concept of “selling”—particularly when it concerns their patients—it is important for them to keep in mind the value of what they offer. They owe it to their patients to become more skilled in case presentation to be able to effectively communicate a treatment plan that will improve patient health and quality of life.

Define Your Purpose
There are typically two basic types of dental offices. A successful office is very passionate about producing results for its patients. Team members make a special effort to bring greater value to their patients than the monetary value of their payments. A dead office, on the other hand, tends to be the reverse. A dead office is all about trying to get the patient to do something just so the office can pay the bill or so that the practice can survive.
Looking at it from the top down, the language the dentist uses should be geared toward making money while providing a positive experience for employees and patients alike. Two words that should never be uttered by a good doctor are “I need”—as in: “I need to have 40 patients […]

By |May 20th, 2014|Categories: Uncategorized||0 Comments

What’s New in Trios

Experience the new and awesome features of TRIOS 2014 – including shade measurements, HD photos, live bite alignment, patient-driven interface, measure undercuts, improved send form, and more…

100 Days of Trios

Interview with Dr. Wendy AuClair  Clark, DDS, MS
Whether regarding the market’s hottest smart phone or something bigger, most owners of new technology will start out by critically scrutinizing their new piece of equipment. And Doctors just setting off with the TRIOS® Digital Impression solution are no exception.  Some say that the first 100 days is the perfect span of time needed in order to judge a sophisticated product.  100 days is not long enough to forget the learning stage, yet it is long enough to form a qualified opinion about functionality, usability, and results. The 100-day user will always be special – so we went out and found one for TRIOS® – and asked for her verdict.
Dr. Wendy AuClair Clark is a practicing prosthodontist at Goldstein, Garber & Salama, which is located in Atlanta, GA.  This practice, sometimes known as “Team Atlanta Esthetic Dentistry”, has been a leader in smile design for more than three decades.  When the decision came to implement the 3Shape TRIOS® into the practice, Dr. Clark was very excited to be using a new intra-oral scanner. She had had previous experience using other digital impression scanners in the past and was eager to learn how TRIOS® would differ – and if she would even use it.

How was your experience getting started with the 3Shape TRIOS® solution?

Both the set up and the training was a very easy and simple process. The system expert got us started. He did the installation the first day, which was setting it up with our network and setting up the connection with our labs. The second day was for training. We worked with TRIOS® – the interface, turning it on, adding users, checking cases, and scanning […]

Will 3D Printing Change the Dental World?

3D printing takes the efficiencies of digital design into the production stage. By combining intraoral scanning and CAD/CAM design with 3D printing, we can accurately and rapidly produce crowns, bridges, stone models, partial substructures, and more. And this is just the beginning of what 3D printers will soon be able to accomplish.

Interdisciplinary Dentistry at Its Best

How like-minded dentists and technicians who work as true partners stand to profit most

By Ellen Meyer

The relationship between the dental technician and the dentist is unlike most customer-vendor relationships, mainly in that their jobs are so interdependent—they need to work together effectively as true partners to succeed. The technician can only produce restorations that meet exacting standards if the dentist provides the information that can make that possible, and they must both be accessible and responsive to efficiently execute the treatment plan together to the patient’s satisfaction. The best of these relationships is built on mutual trust and compatible working styles, and perhaps, most of all, a shared vision. Those dentist-technician partners who have achieved a well-honed working relationship place a high priority on accountability, high professional standards, and the use of the latest technology to facilitate communication.
Identifying The Right Partners
Finding such a partner doesn’t typically occur through happenstance. As in personal relationships, which they often become, “chemistry” is important, as are shared goals and the ability to balance one another. The partnership may be “set up” via mutual professional associates, or find its beginnings at gatherings focused on the professional interests the dentist and technician share.

Arnold Liebman, an Assistant Clinical Professor at New York University College of Dentistry with a private practice in Brooklyn, New York, has clicked with like-minded team partners of all kinds through co-education. He says he enjoys being around dentists and technicians who are educators and are invested in continuing education. “I always look for technicians who are using and understand technology, basically those who are on the forefront of the dental field,” he adds.

Among those who fit this description is his frequent partner, Robert Kreyer Jr., CDT, who […]

Determination and Communication of Color

The determination and communication of color in dentistry is based on dated concepts that cause difficulty for clinicians and technicians who use their personal experiences to interpret this parameter, which is so important in aesthetic care. In this article, the author proposes a concept of color that has evolved from the observation and study of extracted and in vivo natural dentition. This research has been performed with the aim of providing the clinician with a predictable method of determining color from clinical evidence.

Choose Value over Cost – The Smart Cheap Crown

Our experience as a dental laboratory and as people has taught us that it’s instinctive to explore the lowest cost options first; however, there’s a significant difference between cost and value when calculating your return on investment. We’ve discovered that when affordability is a criteria, it’s critical to have a partner that will help you grow your business at the appropriate pace.

Identify Unmet Needs

All business coaches teach to question anyone who doesn’t first attempt to understand your unique business strategy. This is not a one-crown-fits-all industry so it’s important to begin by helping our clients identify their unmet needs. Quality and affordability of restorations are important, but a true partner goes further to offer high-level support and cooperative strategy planning. It’s our mission to help dental practices navigate the radically progressing industry, and you’ll discover that we deliver a simple, concise, and logical approach to meeting today’s dentistry demands.

Prove It Approach

The true measure of success in the dentist – lab partnership is found in the growth of mutual business. We want to help clinicians in our network grow their businesses, and we see ourselves as a strong channel to help develop relationships and compete on a value-added basis rather than encouraging unsustainable downward market pricing.
The opportunity is to get to know us by the quality of our work and experience the depth of our support. We have an enthusiasm for education and a genuine desire to understand your growth strategy. Call us today to see how our unique approach to the doctor – laboratory relationship can support your practice.

Dustin Earnest
Development