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    8 emerging technologies that will change the dental laboratory

    These innovations are already in other industries—and they’re coming to dentistry soon, bringing changes that will have huge implications.

     

    medical robot

    Robotics

    Earlier this year, the first robot designed for dental implant surgery was approved by the FDA. It’s designed to ensure accurate and precise oral surgery, specifically for implant cases and implant placements. And it’s also just a glimpse at how much robotics could change dentistry.

    Looking back at 2012: How far has dentistry come?

    Currently, surgical robots are coming into their own in the medical field, and those innovations have obvious implications for dentistry. The intent of surgical robots is to allow more precise control over surgeries, ostensibly providing better care, less invasive procedures and improved healing times. Some researchers are even experimenting with completely hands-free surgeries—though these will likely always be a minority since quick reactions and critical thinking are key to any surgery.

    What could robotics bring to dentistry? Well, it’s obvious that dental surgery could eventually be robotized. But other areas could be helped by robotics as well. Perhaps a robot could be guided by a 3D CAD and CBCT scan to perfectly drill an implant site, followed by the perfect placement of a crown, all from the same scan file. Or, micro-robots could be used for minimally invasive, in-office procedures that used to require a large team and a surgical operatory.

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    Ryan Hamm
    Ryan Hamm is the Editorial Director for Dental Products Report and Digital Esthetics.

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