I scan digital impressions of teeth, computer design the crowns, create an STL file, and 3D print out porcelain/zirconia crowns with a CAD-CAM milling machine, that fit perfectly and look beautiful.
This patient presented with a broken 25 year old bridge replacing a missing front tooth. I re-prepped the teeth, digitally scanned the impression, computer designed a new bridge, 3D printed it out and cemented it in. Totally awesome!!!
For this implant bridge case I digitally scanned in the impression of his teeth, implant abutments, and bite. Then computer designed and 3D printed out the bridge. Then screwed it into his mouth. Turned out perfect and the patient was very pleased :-)))
As Dean’s Faculty, Clinical Assistant Professor in The Advanced General Dentistry Department at The University of Maryland School of Dentistry, I am used to teaching and educating residents and senior dental students. I am always happy to answer questions and show patients exactly what I am doing and explain why.
CBCT systems used by dental professionals rotate around the patient, capturing data using a cone-shaped X-ray beam. This data is used to reconstruct a three-dimensional (3D) image of the of the patient’s head and neck. CBCT uses more radiation than regular dental teeth x-rays, but still less than 10% of the radiation used in conventional medical CT scan of the same area.
This is the Carestream 9300 Imaging machine we have at the University of Maryland Dental School. I mostly use this to plan dental implant placement.
Dentists use Cone Beam CT imaging for the following:• 3-D observation of overall oral/facial bony characteristics, allowing easier diagnosis and placement of dental implants • Surgical guide fabrication for implant placement • 3-D observation of teeth for endodontic diagnosis and treatment • Diagnosis and treatment of tooth impactions • Identification of inferior alveolar nerve and mental foramen location • Identification of the location of the maxillary sinus • Identification of the presence of odontogenic lesions • Trauma evaluation and treatment • Analysis of temporomandibular joint characteristics leading to diagnosis and treatment • Integration with CAD/CAM devices for fabrication of prosthodontics or orthodontic appliances • Identification for referral of numerous conditions or diseases not normally within the realm of dentistry, but that can be shown on typical cone beam images.
These last 2 pictures show how we use information obtained from the Cone Beam CT to plan placement of dental implants.
CAD/CAM is an acronym for computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing. CAD/CAM technology has been increasingly incorporated into dentistry over the past 20 years. CAD/CAM technology is used by dentists and dental laboratories to provide our patients with 3-D milled ceramic crowns and other types of restorations, and to fabricate abutments for dental implants, used to replace missing teeth. A digital impression is taken of the patient’s teeth or dental impression, and the restoration is milled from a single block of tooth colored ceramic material in a milling chamber.
The 3-D milling machine fabricating the dental restoration.