Digital impressions are the latest cutting-edge technology in capturing a replica of the mouth digitally. By using lasers and other optical scanning devices, dentists can create a virtual, computer generated model of the hard and soft tissues in the mouth. The scanning device captures clear and accurate impression data within minutes, without the need for traditional molding impressions that some patients find messy and uncomfortable. After taking a scan of the mouth, a dentist can immediately send the digital impression to a lab where dentures, crowns, bridges, and other restoration models can be made quickly and accurately.
What Are Digital Impressions?
A digital impression is a virtual scan that creates a map of your teeth. This digital map allows dentists to view patient’s teeth on a computer screen rather than using a mirror, taking a mold, or looking at an X-ray, which are the traditional methods.
A digital impression can be captured by a series of digital photographs or by a digital video. Both methods capture precise measurements in the mouth and send numerous small images that are immediately stitched together by the digital impression machine’s software to form a precise map of your mouth. Most of the time patients can view these images on a chair-side monitor.
Benefits of Digital Impressions
For patients, the advantages of using digital impressions outweigh traditional methods. This new technology provides increased accuracy, efficiency, and productivity for patients. Additionally, it makes it possible for dentists to scan or email the virtual impressions to the laboratory, rather than having to send traditional impressions by mail.
Additional benefits for using digital impressions include:
- Overall comfort. Digital impressions are more comfortable than molding impressions, especially for those patients who have sensitive gag reflexes or sensitivity to cold material, and for those who have anxiety when undergoing dental treatment.
- Eliminating the need for impression materials that are more prone to error than digital scans
- Advanced impression quality resulting in better fitting restorations
- Less chair time due to quick image scans. Most scans can be completed in 3-5 minutes.
- Faster turnaround time. Digital files can be edited more quickly and sent to the lab faster than traditional molding models.
- Patients being more involved in the restoration process because they can see their impressions on-screen chairside.
- A digital impression can easily be stored electronically, resulting in less paperwork, more efficient record-keeping, and less required physical storage space
- Eliminating the need for disposable plastic trays and impression materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill
Digital Impressions at DDS Labs
Intraoral scanners and digital impressions are the way of the future. Whether you are using Sirona CEREC, iTero, 3Shape TRIOS, 3M True Definition or most any other digital impression technologies on the market today, DDS Lab can accept your files and create the highest quality restorations from a wide variety of materials.
To learn more about our services and how to send your files, contact our experienced technical team.