Everything is digitizing, including dentistry. While many dentists have been using digital technologies to create things like crowns and retainers for many years, dentures have been slower to gain popularity. For a variety of reasons, dentures are slightly more difficult to digitize.
It is safe to say that we have now reached a point where digital dentures are predictably accurate and have high rates of patient satisfaction. In this article, we will describe some of the benefits of digital dentures over traditionally-fabricated dentures.
- Fewer Appointments
If you are in the process of getting new dentures, you understand the need for many dental visits. Traditional dentures require multiple appointments for various impressions and fittings before the final denture is complete. A typical traditional denture takes about 4-6 weeks from start to finish.
Digital dentures require fewer appointments in your dentist’s office. This means you take less time off work and spend less time in the chair. There are many different brands and protocols for various digital dentures. Some involve only three appointments.
- Faster Processing
The process of digital dentures requires less time for two reasons. First of all, there is no time necessary for the movement of physical materials between your dentist’s office and the dental lab. In many cases of traditional dentures, the materials are mailed back and forth between the two offices. Not only does this take time, it also increases the risk that materials could be lost in transit.
Digital dentures require only digital communication via email or within the design software between your dentist and the lab. When changes are necessary, rather than adjusting the physical models or teeth, the dentist makes the adjustment virtually and instantly.
- Better Fit
Many studies show a higher level of accuracy of digital impressions and models compared to traditional molds and casts used historically. When the process begins with a more accurate replica of the patient’s mouth, the outcome of the denture is also more accurate.
A denture with an accurate fit has better retention. The patient will suffer less looseness, which means there is less need for the use of adhesives, fewer embarrassing episodes during speaking, laughing, or chewing, and fewer sore spots. Dentures that are slightly loose can cause blisters or sores inside the mouth, like a shoe that is a little too big that causes blisters by the slight looseness rubbing a particular area of the foot.
- Fewer Adjustment Visits
After receiving a new set of dentures, patients often return to the dentist for frequent adjustments. The need for these adjustments arises from problems with the fit of the dentures, looseness, or an improper bite between the upper and lower dentures. Each adjustment requires the patient to take time off work and spend more time in the dental office.
The greater accuracy of digital dentures reduces the need for post-delivery adjustments. Because the denture has a more accurate fit against the patient’s gums, there is a reduced risk of looseness. A denture that fits closely and has good retention in the mouth will cause fewer sore spots requiring adjustment.
The internal surface of a digital denture is less likely to include defects or high-pressure spots. This means that the denture is likely to feel more comfortable from the very beginning of wear.
- Remakes with No Appointments
Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of digital dentures stems from the ability that your dentist and dental lab have to “save” the denture in its digital format. Rather than having physical impressions and models, your dentist has a digital file of all of the aspects of your denture records. If something happens to your existing denture (i.e. you lose it or break it), you can call your dentist and request a remake without having to start the process over from the beginning.
These digital records saved in your file allow your dentist to remake a set of dentures without your setting foot in the office. It also reduces the amount of time that you are without a denture. Your dentist communicates to his or her lab to reprint or re-mill a new denture according to the most recent records, and you simply schedule an appointment for delivery.
More Questions About Digital Dentures? Call Rockland Dental Today!
Call Rockland Dental Specialists today at (845) 259-2500 or contact us and schedule a consultation with one of our experts. We can answer any question you have about digital dentures and help you or your loved one start the process for great-fitting dentures as soon as possible.