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Inside Dental Technology
December 2020
Volume 11, Issue 11

Transformative Resins for Orthodontics and Night Guards

KeyOrtho IBT and KeySplint Soft make 3D printing more viable

Brandon Owen, DDS, MS

KLOwen Braces is a 100% custom system that reduces treatment time and dentist time. We use a 3D printed tray to position braces in the exact correct position. Of course, providing our orthodontists with the easiest materials to use as part of this system is very important.

One of the most impactful materials we have used is KeyOrtho IBT from Keystone Industries. This 3D printing resin overcomes some of the most significant challenges that we faced before—primarily, the material sticking to the patient's teeth. With previous materials, the trays would stick to the glue that was used to put the braces on, and the orthodontist would need to tear them off in several pieces. It resulted in a very technique-sensitive process. KeyOrtho IBT, however, has a significant reduction in adherence to the bonding resins. The trays now have a nonstick surface, making it much easier for dental assistants to put braces on patients' teeth without sacrificing any accuracy or precision. From a usability standpoint, it is just leaps and bounds ahead of anything else on the market. Plus, KeyOrtho IBT is odorless and tasteless, a big improvement over other options and an important factor for patient (child) comfort during the process.

Additionally, Keystone has produced a game-changing material for the other 3D printing application that I utilize most frequently: night guards. I was the first person to 3D print a night guard in North America, but I learned quickly that the materials at the time were not good enough. Patients were complaining about the night guards being too tight on their teeth, forcing me to spend time adjusting them, and the materials did not last long; they started getting cracks after 2 to 3 months, and they had multiple breaks after 6 to 9 months. Patients with TMJ disorders clench very hard, very frequently, so they need something that is very resilient in the mouth. Keystone's KeySplint Soft is so much more durable than anything else on the market. I have dropped it down a 25-foot stairwell and squeezed it as hard as I could—both actions that would cause any other night guard to shatter into many pieces—but KeySplint Soft does not break. I can even make it thinner in order to increase patient comfort, and it has a thermoelastic property in the warmth of the patient's mouth that allows it to soften slightly in any tight spots. It is easily the best night guard material available.

Keystone producing the best products for both of these 3D printing applications is no coincidence. Their team takes the time to develop their materials and validations the right way. Even for less-precise printers that use 405-nm wavelengths, Keystone's materials print better than anything else. The time savings that this predictability provides to the dentist can be worth more than $1,000 per bottle.

For so many reasons, any of the standard resins available from other companies just do not match up to KeySplint Soft and KeyOrtho IBT. Keystone is the clear winner.

Key Takeaways

› KeyOrtho IBT does not react with glue, making it much easier for dental assistants to put braces on patients' teeth using printed trays

› KeySplint Soft is stronger than any other night guard material on the market but also more comfortable due to thermoelasticity and the ability to make the night guards thinner

› Keystone's validations with various 3D printers create accuracy and predictability that save significant amounts of time

About the Author

Brandon Owen, DDS, MS
Fort Collins, CO

Manufacturer Information
Keystone Industries

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