Digital dentistry and dental technology aren’t being left in the dust during our current technological revolution. Digitization has captured our world, including the dental one. Computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) are becoming increasingly important in dental laboratories and dental practices. This includes devices such as scanners, milling machines, and 3D printers, but also CAD software and CAM software.
Advantages of Digital Dentistry and Dental Technology
Digital dentistry opens huge possibilities no one can deny. Work is made faster and more efficient, significantly reducing the risk of errors. Plus, recordkeeping becomes a breeze when digitally collected data remains permanently available.
Digital dentistry and dental technology help improve communication between dentists and technicians and between dentists and patients through more precise data and better visualization options. Work steps are standardized, and the material quality is increased.
Another major bonus in digital dentistry is that more sophisticated and precise processing methods allow dentists to carry out procedures that are exceptionally minimally invasive. That means the dentists can save even more of your own natural tooth substance (which is always a top priority for dental professionals).
Using More Materials with CAD and CAM
With the popularization of dental technology, reliable long-term monitoring provides better care for patients than we ever thought possible. Plus, dentists can now use other high-performance materials through CAD and CAM processes, such as zirconium oxide and high-performance polymers in their dental treatment plans.
Any dental practice utilizing CAD and CAM benefits knows that they make everyday tasks much more manageable. CAD and CAM technology simplifies complex work steps and delivers reproducible precision. Plus, workflow and efficiency are optimized.
Furthermore, the error rate and the risk of extra work are eliminated because computer-aided production reduces physical work steps and consequently, the risk of manual processing errors. In this way, dental technology enables technicians and dentists to get good results faster and more efficiently.
Limits of Digital Dentistry
Unfortunately, dental technology still has limits, which means humans are always necessary and indispensable, no matter the technological advances. Experienced dentists and technicians with manual skills and the ability to produce results are always needed.
Dental technology and digital processes are not a substitute but an added benefit for people. The best technological advancements will still serve people, not make them redundant.
Everything boils down to combining classic manual work steps with digital processes. By combining the strengths of dental technology (like reliability, reproducibility, and standardization) with the advantages of physical work steps, dental patients have the best of both worlds—for example, top-notch customer service combined with world-class dental care.
Examples of Upcoming Digital Dentistry
Many digital innovations are already being used in dentistry and dental technology, with more coming down the pike. Researchers, inventors, and manufacturers worldwide are examining how new developments are being used in the dental world. The focus is always on the goal of making treatment processes more efficient and optimizing results.
- Wearable Technology
Wearables are small, portable, Bluetooth-enabled microdevices. They’re attached to the body to collect and process user data continuously.
- Data Glasses
Data glasses are a small computer that you wear like regular eyeglasses. You’re connected to the Internet via sensors and cameras. The data glasses can fade in virtual objects (3D holograms) through projected points of light in the field of view with which the user can interact.
Data glasses like the Microsoft HoloLens 2 connects the real with the virtual world. Those who use data glasses work faster and more efficiently. Users can have all relevant information transmitted in real-time to the screen of the data glasses. Plus, the glasses reduce the risk of errors because every work step is carried out under expert guidance.
Making Digital Dentistry Work for You
Digitization opens a multitude of new, previously unimagined possibilities. More efficient and more predictable results are possible thanks to digital work processes. New techniques enable more precise planning and communication. All over the world, researchers, dentists, and technicians are busy developing new strategies to offer even better and more patient-friendly solutions.
Although Danville Family Dentistry doesn’t yet use a HoloLens or wearable technology, we know how to treat our patients to affordable, professional, and compassionate care. Come down and meet our highly skilled crew by calling us today at 317-745-4400. We can’t wait to hear from you.
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Disclaimer: The information included in this article is for educational purposes only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.