Lucitone Digital Print Is Here
In late September, Dentsply Sirona introduced the new Lucitone Digital Print and IPN 3D materials for dentures. Inside Dental Technology spoke to leading denture professionals Robert Kreyer, CDT, and Stephen Wagner, DDS, about the impact these materials will have on the collaborative process.
Inside Dental Technology (IDT): How significant is the arrival of a 3D printable material from the Lucitone brand?
Robert Kreyer, CDT: Lucitone is so well established and respected that its name is used as a generic term. It is an acrylic-resin that has been widely used by the last two generations. The new printable Lucitone will be a game changer.
Stephen Wagner, DDS: I have used Lucitone for more than 40 years. For a product to evolve but also maintain a level of consistency for the patient is important. I want the transition to printed dentures to be seamless for the patient.
IDT: Why was there a demand for better printable denture materials?
Kreyer: Until now, no material suitable for long-term use quite matched the oral environment while also offering high impact resistance. Esthetically, Lucitone Digital Print matches the acrylic-resin colors that professionals have long favored for denture base processing.
Wagner: Lucitone Digital Print has the potential to be much more accurate and much more stable. Older resins shrink when they are polymerized, so we have needed to account for and correct that shrinkage or deformation. With a printed denture, this has been virtually eliminated. It is not only a change—it is a change for the better.
IDT: How do you expect the new IPN 3D denture teeth to improve the process?
Wagner: Patients want dentures that look the same as their older ones. The IPN 3D teeth leverage proven Dentsply Sirona materials for esthetics and durability.
Kreyer: Additionally, the IPN 3D teeth are supported by digital libraries that are pre-occluded, so during a virtual design and setup, these teeth will occlude better and faster when creating a bilateral balanced occlusion or a lingualized occlusal scheme. With IPN 3D, Dentsply Sirona has maintained the principles of prosthodontics that Dr. Alfred Gysi developed a century ago.
IDT: No matter how great digital materials and processes are, which analog skills are important to retain?
Wagner: We need to utilize the same fundamental prosthodontic processes to make this denture as we always have. The workflow may be accelerated, but I still need to communicate and provide the technician with the necessary information. Where I can save time is with the patient in the chair. This is an evolution, not a revolution.
Kreyer: Basic knowledge of prosthodontic principles, including the necessity of impeccable impressions, is even more important in the digital world because details can be seen on a large screen that could not be detected otherwise. Dentists still need to understand the importance of capturing accurate impressions, maxillo-mandibular records, vertical dimension, centric relation, etc. Technicians need to continue to analyze ridge relationships, then select anterior and posterior teeth for the desired occlusal scheme.
IDT: How necessary is the try-in with a digital process?
Wagner: I would never place a denture without a try-in. I believe trying to save time by eliminating the try-in is wrong, no matter how accurate the fabrication process becomes.
Kreyer: The try-in is an integral part of communicating with a patient on the esthetics of their denture and verifying records and functional occlusion. Some circumstances such as immediate dentures require skipping the try-in, and a try-in is not always necessary when duplicating an existing denture. However, when a laboratory uses a digital workflow to get a fully printed monolithic try-in, the patient can now test the fit and function during speaking or eating, unlike with an analog wax try-in.
IDT: What is needed most from the dentist and the laboratory working together to build a successful printed denture?
Wagner: Communication—either verbal or via record sharing. The more I can talk to Rob [Kreyer], the better I am as a dentist. The more pictures I can send him, the better opportunity he has of helping me achieve a successful outcome. An opportunity exists to make the dentist and technician equal partners in the process. This offers technicians the chance to guide the dentist and talk on equal terms, and the patient will benefit significantly. It is not about doing something for the dentist; it is about creating something with the dentist.
Kreyer: Today, laboratory technicians must understand analog and digital workflow solutions. To achieve successful outcomes, the prosthetic dental team must understand differences in material options and why new products such as Lucitone Digital Print and IPN 3D will provide a better denture for their edentulous patients.
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