Venerable Nightguard Material Now Available in Disc Form for CAD/CAM
Astron Dental, maker of CLEARsplint, the industry’s leading premium nightguard material, has now introduced that material in disc form for CAD/CAM machines. Inside Dental Technology caught up with Tom Rissman, Astron’s CEO, to find out more about this breakthrough new product.
Inside Dental Technology (IDT): What makes the CLEARsplint disc such an exciting new product introduction for Astron?
Tom Rissman: CLEARsplint has been used for years to make great nightguards using traditional casting methods, and we will continue to provide it that way, but dentistry is moving to digital technologies and we want to support that. Digital technologies such as laser scanning are easier on patients and permit faster manufacture of appliances.
IDT: Do digitally designed and fabricated nightguards really represent a benefit to the industry?
Rissman: CLEARsplint nightguards made traditionally or digitally are essentially identical, but due to the savings in time and labor costs, we think laboratories will be excited about the disc method. With the cost of CAD/CAM technology decreasing as it has in recent years, we also believe we’ll be seeing more and more laboratories and large dental offices making their nightguards in the future using CAD/CAM processes.
IDT: How do prices compare between the traditional product and the new disc?
Rissman: Considering that you can typically get two nightguards out of each disc, plus the cost savings that digital methods offer in regard to labor, shipping, time, and other material costs, laboratories will likely see an overall cost savings with the disc. Even if the cost were the same, the ability to produce high-quality nightguards quickly and with fewer skilled employees is a compelling proposition.
IDT: Do you need specific model CAD/CAM machines to use them?
Rissman: We did our homework and have three different sizes to make sure they work with virtually all available machines. Interested buyers can check out our website at astrondental.com to see the actual sizes they need for their machines.
IDT: CAD/CAM machines have been available for quite some time. Why are discs for nightguards just coming out now?
Rissman: This was not an easy process. We went through extensive research and development before being able to get the discs just right. It was important to us that traditional cast CLEARsplint and the disc version of CLEARsplint be chemically identical, and casting something as large as our discs proved to be a challenge. Our scientists could probably tell you why, but while the process was painstaking, the results are well worth it—for Astron, the industry, and patients.
IDT: Speaking of patients, what benefits does the CLEARsplint disc bring to them?
Rissman: CLEARsplint material has always been a great patient-pleasing product due to its optical clarity, comfort, strength, and our unique flexibility. Since the new discs allow nightguards to be made from the same material but with digital accuracy, and at a much faster rate, more patients will be able to benefit from CLEARsplint nightguards, and they will be able to get them as soon as they need them.
IDT: Where can readers find more information and purchase CLEARsplint nightguard discs?
Rissman: All the “how to buy” info is on astrondental.com. Just click on “How to Buy,” and we’ll be happy to fill your order!