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Inside Dentistry
July 2015
Volume 11, Issue 7

Beyond Digital Diagnostics

How design software can help encourage case acceptance

Jimmy Fincher, CDT

Owning a laboratory that specializes in cosmetic dentistry through CAD/CAM technology has made the past several years the most exciting times of my career. The Planmeca PlanScan® system has transformed the way my laboratory services our clients with consistently high-quality products in a short time. That service now includes the Romexis® Smile Design software from Planmeca.

I have always created diagnostic wax-ups on large and small cosmetic cases whenever possible. However, quite often I speak with dentists who have undecided patients who just need a little nudge. This creates an ideal opportunity to let Smile Design shine. The software actively involves patients in the designing process and allows them to see the full potential of their smiles in the early stages. Foreseeable results help to build trust and decrease uncertainty, as patients can be assured that the treatment outcome will match their expectations. Using just a picture of the patient, the software allows me to digitally create a beautiful smile in as little as 10 minutes. I can return the design quickly to the dentist at a fraction of the cost and labor of making a traditional diagnostic wax-up.

How Smile Design Works

1. The dentist or assistant takes a photo of the patient’s current smile. A smartphone camera is not only acceptable but preferred. The dentist or assistant should be approximately 2 to 3 feet away from the patient and ensure that the light is projecting somewhat evenly on the patient’s face.

2. Once the laboratory receives the photo from the dentist’s office via email, the image is saved and quickly imported into Smile Design.

3. A new smile is created for the patient using the software’s tools by overlaying a set of library teeth. The size and plane of occlusion can be adjusted in a matter of seconds to seamlessly blend and fit the library teeth within the patient’s mouth.

4. After the new smile is complete, a before-and-after photo is quickly generated. Designs can be printed out or securely sent to patients, dental laboratories, or other specialists via the Planmeca Romexis Cloud file transfer service.

Selling the case is not where the process ends for Planmeca’s Romexis Smile Design software. Once we have received the digital or conventional impression from the dentist, Smile Design can generate an outline that can be used as an overlay to guide us in the design of the restorations in the PlanCAD design software. This ensures that we are able to recreate an accurate representation of the photo in the final restoration

Planmeca Romexis Smile Design software also provides dentists with the means to visually and numerically communicate with other specialists and dental laboratories in determining the appropriate treatment options for patients.

Key Takeways

· Software allows patients to see the full potential of their smiles in the early stages

· Using just a patient photo, the software allows creation of a smile digitally in as little as 10 minutes

· Communicate visually and numerically with other specialists and dental laboratories in determining appropriate treatment options

About the author

Jimmy Fincher, CDT, is the owner of Cosmetic Advantage in Lewisville, Texas.

For more information, contact:

Planmeca CAD/CAM Solutions

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