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DTS CHATS TO MAXIMILIAN STOCKKAMP, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER OF CAD/CAM AT VITA ABOUT DIGITAL PRODUCTION & NEW MATERIALS

This week DTS caught up with Maximilian Stockkamp, Business Development Manager of CAD/CAM at VITA, to discuss the digital workflow, new production techniques and the first hybrid dental ceramic material in the world. Find out more about the revolutionary VITA ENAMIC below!

 How does digital manufacturing differentiate VITA ENAMIC from other traditionally manufactured restorations?

New technologies are now part of everyday life in the dental industry and are used in nearly all areas, from documentation of the initial situation, to design, production using 3D printers or milling machines and even finishing. Digital production technologies can make fabrication of restorations more cost-effective.

The VITA ENAMIC hybrid ceramic material combines the positive attributes of ceramics and composites, allowing for an even more efficient production process. The polymer network provides the dominant ceramic network with a certain amount of elasticity similar to that of dentin and therefore enables significantly higher levels of continuous load. Thanks to exceptional edge stability of the material, detailed and accurate grinding and milling results (wet and dry) can be achieved. The excellent milling properties of VITA ENAMIC guarantee that restorations can be fabricated more quickly as well as wear and tear on milling tools can be minimized. The hybrid ceramic is already at full strength and can be seated directly after polishing,  no firing process required. Shade characterization and customization are performed with matching light-curing materials.

What makes VITA ENAMIC stand out from the rest of the VITA range?

VITA ENAMIC is the first hybrid dental ceramic material in the world with a dual-network structure and represents a brand-new class of materials. With this dental material, the dominant ceramic network is reinforced by a polymer network with both networks fully integrated with one another. Thanks to this special manufacturing process, VITA Zahnfabrik has created a product that is unprecedented in the dental market. Because of the exceptionally high elasticity and load capacity after adhesive bonding, the hybrid ceramic is perfectly suited for posterior crown restorations and also allows for a reduction of wall thickness for minimally-invasive restorations. The use of VITA ENAMIC on implants is particularly recommended due to these properties, combined with the abilities of force absorption and the integrated crack-stop function.

In the future, the range of indications for VITA ENAMIC will be extended even further. As a result, the launch of the VITA ENAMIC multiColor block at IDS 2017 is being eagerly awaited. The VITA ENAMIC multiColor block has six coordinated shade layers (2 thicker outer layers and 4 thinner inner layers) in five different, highly translucent VITA 3D MASTER shades. It is especially recommended as an anterior or posterior crown, crowns on implants, and as a veneer.

How can dentists benefit from using VITA ENAMIC in a digital workflow as opposed to a traditional workflow?

First of all, the software and hardware requirements for optimal processing are already met because all VITA CAD/CAM materials are integrated and validated in the most common CAD/CAM systems. Likewise, VITA ENAMIC perfectly meets the requirements for chairside treatment as it allows for fast (1h appointment), easy yet high-quality restorations (100% survival rate based on clinical studies).

For example, as I mentioned earlier, the milling time for VITA ENAMIC restorations with 17 minutes grinding and 24 minutes milling for a fully contoured posterior tooth crown (used system: DMG MORI Ultrasonic 20) is by far the shortest for dental CAD/CAM material. The hybrid ceramic also ensures a long milling tool service life of up to 148 milled crowns for each set of milling tools, making it more cost-effective than similar materials. Also, the material can be easily processed and provides excellent polishing results. Special 2-stage polishing assortments (technical and clinical) were developed for intraoral and extraoral use.

Thanks to the tooth-shaded dental material and excellent light transmitting properties, VITA ENAMIC restorations integrate perfectly into the residual tooth substance and provide a natural shade effect. And with the new multi-layer VITA ENAMIC multiColor, hybrid ceramics will also represent a new dimension in esthetics.

These features meet the ever-growing expectations of patients and help to boost patient satisfaction.

How do you think digital design and production methods have changed the restorations we create?

In general, the current challenges in the markets show that the array of products is becoming more and more differentiated and diverse. Once restricted to specific regions, competition in this changing market is steadily becoming more global, resulting in price competition and a trend toward saturation. As a result of these dynamic changes, especially digitization, manufacturers and suppliers are faced with the challenge of differentiating their products from the large number of similar products on the market in order to serve demanding customers effectively. These dynamic changes allow for more customer involvement in the upstream stages of the value chain, meaning customers can have an influence on early phases of product development, for example.

VITA ENAMIC can even be called a benchmark in this regard. Inspired by the long-held dream of creating a highly esthetic elastic ceramic material, this unrivaled product combines an established range of materials and is well positioned in the middle of the CAD / CAM product range as the perfect answer to customer expectations such as lower waiting times during chairside treatments.

TAKING THE UNKNOWN OUT OF IMPLANT DENTISTRY

DTS has been delivering implant retained restorations since the early days of implantology in the UK, which is almost 35 years now, and we would like to think we have gained a pretty good knowledge on systems and techniques. We are known for our innovation and problem solving and, with the huge impact digital technology is making to manufacturing, there has never been a better time to support our customers through these implant procedures. Due to our in-house milling and digital technology techniques we have been able to provide more accurate solutions and even been able to give highly aesthetic solutions to problems that would have proved challenging or even impossible before.

DTS were one of the companies that pioneered the bending of screw access hole in metal frameworks 20 degrees allowing more flexibility in the aesthetic zone. This technique has now become common practice.

When it came to higher aesthetics, DTS was amongst the first to deliver zirconia abutments and full morphology zirconia crowns using titanium interfaces. Although not for every case, these techniques undoubtedly provide higher aesthetics in reduced space.

We found our biggest challenge in implant cases was to always give a consistent and accurate cost. Due to the multitude of different implant systems and the huge variation in both surgery and lab components prices, it was almost impossible to advertise an actual price for a complete implant restoration. Implant pricing in most dental labs was, and still is, a black art with additional unforeseen costs at every point. In this competitive marketplace this in no way is ideal for the practice who have to give accurate quotes to patients while being confident that no additional costs from the lab will compromise the surgery pricing.

Fortunately for DTS customers we are starting to move on from those days with the introduction last year of our fixed price implant cases. Through working with our sister company Core3dcentres, which creates digital dental solutions on a global scale, we were able to develop consistent pricing for components for a significant proportion of common implant systems. There are still one or two closed implant systems that we can’t have fixed prices on, but these are the exception rather than the rule.

Our fixed price implant cases give a solid price with no hidden costs or surprises. They are completely all inclusive: you can quote with confidence.  Of course not every case fits within the standard fixed price options, however we have worked hard to offer the most commonly requested solutions to make your cases as cost effective as possible.

Add this to our expertise in oral scanning technology and workflows and you add a further dimension to treatment planning and patient satisfaction.

Since introducing this concept our customers have embraced it and we have had excellent feedback. This concept however is nothing without an experienced team of high quality and knowledgeable technicians to deliver the best results for your patient. We believe that DTS have some of the finest implant technicians in the UK. This tailored with our innovation, digital technology and consistent pricing structure ensures that our offerings in the world of implant restorations are something to shout about.

For more information please give us a call and speak with our team, who will happily guide you through our workflows and advise how we tailor them to your practice.

 

 

 

Graham Littlejohn Director for DTS and Core3dcentres.

GETTING YOUR TEAM READY TO GO DIGITAL

With the world rapidly changing under our feet, I meet many dentists and their teams who want to make the leap to “go digital” but either don’t know where to start, or are a little lost at what they need to do.  If this is you – you are not alone.

In this article, I am not going to talk about the equipment you may want to invest in… I am going to talk about your team – the people who will actually make this successful.

Here are my top 3 things to think about when moving towards a digital way of working:

  1. DOES YOUR TEAM KNOW WHY?

The biggest, single-handed, number one reason that change fails to work as intended (or as quickly as hoped) is because the team don’t fully understand “why.”  Have you sat down with your team to discuss why you want the practice to be fully or partially digital?  So often I hear, “I’ve told them what I want – why aren’t they doing it?!”  If you have said or thought this, then the only person you have to blame is yourself!  Telling anyone anything once or twice is not enough.  You should be talking about what you want to see, the new technology and how it works, the new processes that need to be put in place etc, as often and as frequently as you physically can.  The more you talk about it with your team, the quicker change will happen.

The second thing about having your team understand the “why” is that they must understand your vision for how things will be different (which they will be) and what has made you want to change the way things are at the moment.  These two points are very important as they give your team confidence in their own roles going forward and what part each of them will need to play to make the change happen.  Remember – even though it may be your vision, the team needs to feel like it is their vision too – so do everything you can to explain, talk about and share with your team.  Paint a vivid picture for them to imagine – and that all starts with the “why.”

  1. WHAT TRAINING DO YOU NEED?

Training is often overlooked when it comes to moving to change.  It costs money to get someone good.  It costs money to close the business for the time needed to do the training.  It might even cost money in travel or hotels or food for everyone.  So, is it worth it?

If you are serious about having a digital practice, it is more about the mind-set and skill of the team than it is about the equipment you have got to play with.  Think about it – would a novice golfer invest in all the clubs that a pro golfer would?  Probably not – it would be a wasted investment.  Equally, if you buy all the kit but don’t train your team, it will be a waste of money because it won’t be utilised to its full potential.  I have been to countless practices that have some of the fanciest kit available – and yet no one knows how to use it properly!  What a waste and what’s the point?

So – if you are serious about wanting to go digital here are a few areas of training you should look at providing for your team (and yourself):

  • Technical and system training – get the best people you can find to come and train your team on how to use every piece of equipment you decide to buy.  It doesn’t matter how much you paid for the equipment – get someone to come and show you all exactly how it works and where the “kinks” are (those things that they say should never go wrong – but usually do!).  You need to create a culture of continual learning with your team, so make it fun.  I have so many ways you can do this, so if you are stuck for ideas – just email me and I’ll be happy to share them with you!
  • Communication training – whenever you invest in a new piece of equipment, you should teach your team how to speak about it with patients.  You should be telling patients every time you invest into something that will help them, just don’t leave it up to the team to make that message up – create it together and practice saying it.  Ask questions to catch each other out, so that you know what to say when you get asked even the hardest of questions – that shows professionalism and competence.  Remember – no one likes it when you ask a question and the person serving you has to go away to find the answer.  This should be a slick operation!
  • Play time – whenever you have installed new equipment, you should set time aside for everyone in the team to practice – and I mean everyone.  Don’t just get the other clinicians involved.  Get everyone in the practice to try the new equipment and play with it – this will generate excitement and dispel any fears that people may have.  It’s also a good idea to get someone from the company that you bought the kit from to come back in to supervise this as they will be able to answer questions that you may not fully know the answers to.  Often nurses and reception staff ask the best questions as they see things from different perspectives than dentists do, so use them and play with the equipment together.
  1. AM I READY?

If you are thinking about going digital in your practice, I strongly advise you find people who have already done it and learn from their mistakes.  Buying the wrong equipment can be an expensive mistake to make – so don’t make it!  Find others who are a little further down the road than you are and learn from them.  There are so many people who are passionate about digital dentistry and are “walking the walk.”  A couple of great people are Jameel Gardee at Glasgow Smile Clinic and Elaine Halley from Cherrybank Dental Spa.  They are inspirational advocates for digital dentistry and love to share their knowledge.  Again, if you want to speak to them or others who are fully utilizing digital dentistry in their daily practice, please get in touch with me and I will be happy to introduce you to them.

Whatever you do – don’t go it alone.  You are not alone – many people are in the same boat as you and the great news is, there is now a massive amount of help and resource available to make it as easy as possible for you and your team.

Adam Morgan