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Kevin Henry was formerly the group editorial director for Advanstar Dental Media and has more than 15 years of experience in the dental publications field. You can follow him on Twitter (@kgh23).
It’s amazing how things can change in the span of one year. Think about where you were as the summer started winding down last year and the changes you have seen in your personal and professional life.
We asked 15 different dental professionals about a product they have had in their practice for a year. When they first incorporated them into their practices, it was a change. Now, the product is cemented into their daily routine.
The Class II Total Practice Solution utilizes a great system for composites that allow practitioners to work faster and better.
• ThePalodent® Plus Sectional Matrix System, designed to deliver accurate contacts for consistent results.
• Prime&Bond Elect® Universal Dental Adhesive, which is built on the clinically proven chemistry of Prime&Bond® NT™, enabling dentists to achieve the consistently high bond strengths necessary to meet patients’ needs, with virtually no post-operative sensitivity.
• SureFil® SDR® flow Bulk Fill Flowable Base can be bulk filled up to 4 mm and has self-leveling handling that provides excellent cavity adaptation.
• TPH Spectra™ Universal Composite Restorative uses a simplified shading system for tooth matching.
• Enhance® Finishing System allows you to effectively smooth restoration surfaces and provide an acceptable finish.
For Dr. Tim Bizga of Parma, Ohio, slowly incorporating the pieces of the DENTSPLY Caulk Class II Total Practice Solution has helped not only him perform better dentistry, but also helped his dental assistants as well.
“This is a system where, once they learned it, the assistant knows exactly what to get out when and in what order,” Dr. Bizga said. “They understand the process, and this engages them a little more I believe. They know what’s coming next and they’re thinking the same way that I am.
“The Class II system really makes me a better dentist as well. Composites really rely on a good system and a good matrix. For me, previously, it was a crapshoot if a contact would actually be successful. Working within the system, I don’t wonder any longer. I can work better and faster, and have a higher quality of dentistry.”
For more information, log on to class2restorations.com.
MI Varnish with RECALDENTTM (CPP-ACP) enhances enamel acid resistance and boosts salivary fluoride levels.
Dr. Howard Cowen of Iowa City, Iowa, believes strongly in trying a product before it ever reaches his patients’ mouths. When he and his team were sampling different varnishes to test for texture and taste, they felt there was one choice that stood out from the rest … MI VarnishTM from GC America Inc.
“We tried a lot of different varnishes, and MI Varnish was what we were looking for,” Dr. Cowen said. “We put this in our own mouths and tried out the flavor and everyone loved it immediately. It’s also very simple to use and we all love that.”
Dr. Cowen has also found that patients have readily accepted MI Varnish, even those who previously refused fluoride.
“Patients don’t want something tacky in their mouths and they don’t want something that is going to leave them with the feeling that something has been caked on,” Dr. Cowen said. “That’s not at all what you get with this product.”
For more information, log on to gcamerica.com.
PlanmecaPlanScan is a fast and easy-to-use intraoral CAD/CAM system for restorative dentistry.
Dr. Gary Kaye operates a fee-for-service practice in the heart of Manhattan, and is the founder of The New York Center for Digital Dentistry. He says that digital restorative dentistry is a “big driver” for business to his practice. With that in mind, the PlanmecaPlanScan has been a big part of his practice’s continued success.
“I would say that it’s been an engine for our growth,” Dr. Kaye said. “It’s easy to use. It’s very fast and it’s very accurate. It allows me to put the handpiece down, pick up the scanning wand, and begin the milling process. It has improved our overall efficiency and absolutely accelerated my practice’s growth.”
Dr. Kaye was a little skeptical when the PlanScan technology was first introduced. However, the skepticism quickly went away.
“There was a lot of fanfare and expectations when this new technology came out and I wondered if it would live up to those expectations,” Dr. Kaye recalled. “It not only did that, but it also exceeded those expectations.”
Orascoptic XV1,the first wireless loupe and headlight, helps improve patient outcomes.
During a normal day at his practice in Woodbridge, N.J., Dr. Marty Jablow used to have his loupes hold him back … literally.
“I disliked my previous corded illumination systems that were clipped onto my surgical telescopes and then I had to clip a battery pack to my surgical scrubs. The cord was always snagging on doorknobs or getting caught on something, many times launching the battery pack from its attachment to my surgical scrubs down the hallway,” Dr. Jablow said. “When I switched to Orascoptic XV1, that became a thing of the past. Now the light and batteries are integrated into the frame.”
Dr. Jablow described Orascoptic XV1s as, “state-of-the-art magnification with integrated illumination. I consider surgical telescopes and illumination the standard of care for dentistry. If you cannot see it well, then you cannot do it well. For me, that means 4.8x magnification and a bright headlight to improve my visualization and produce better dentistry.”
Additionally, Dr. Jablow raved about Orascoptic XV1’s ease of use and comfort.
“The lightweight frame of the telescopes makes them comfortable to wear for extended periods along with the power to keep the light shining for more than six hours,” he said. “The light is easy to control with the back of your gloved hand, as there are no switches or knobs. A simple touch of the capacitive controls is all you need.”
For more information, log on to orascoptic.com/xv1.
LODI is ideal for edentulous patients with severe resorption and narrow ridges.
Dr. Michael Scherer practices in Sonora, Calif., an area in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada region he describes as a semi-rural retirement area. As a prosthodontist, the area seemed perfect for Dr. Scherer to establish his practice. With the inclusion of the LOCATOR Overdenture Implant (LODI) System from ZEST Anchors, he has been able to take his practice to a whole new level.
“I was thrilled when I first heard about the LODI System because I wasn’t satisfied with the one-piece designs that were on the market,” Dr. Scherer explained. “I thought it would fit my needs as a prosthodontist as the LODI narrow diameter implants can be used for my older patients with narrow ridges and I can easily maintain the detachable LOCATOR attachment. I thought the implant and system design really hit the nail on the head. I feel that this system fits the implant to the patient rather than trying to make the patient fit the implant.”
Dr. Scherer has also been impressed with the patient marketing program from ZEST Anchors that helps explain implant-retained overdentures to patients.
“I recently made the front page of the local newspaper when I did a talk at the local senior center,” Dr. Scherer said. “The picture showed one of the senior citizens holding the demonstration model I brought to show patients how implant-retained overdentures with the LOCATOR Attachment work. I started getting phone calls from others who had seen the picture and it had piqued their interest. Program Elements consisting of demonstration model and collateral marketing materials that help patients understand why implant-retained overdenture treatment can help their situation are outstanding and a real benefit to my practice.”
For more information, log on to zestanchors.com.
WaterLase iPlus reduces the need for anesthetic in most restorative cases, while still providing high levels of clinical effectiveness.
Dr. Samuel B. Low recently spoke about how Biolase's WaterLase iPlus has made an impact on the way he practices dentistry, including the benefits that the unique Radial Firing Perio tip provides. He explains, “this feature allows me to access even the deepest pockets for removal of granulation tissue and calculus.”
Dr. Low loves his patients’ perception of the WaterLase iPlus, “My patients enjoy the significant decrease in discomfort following iPlus laser procedures and I enjoy the accelerated healing time.”
Additionally, he explained one of the best features of the iPlus is the intuitive, icon friendly touch screen. Even saying, “I can readily select multiple dental procedures hassle-free and not have to think about settings.” Because of these many features and benefits, Dr. Low said he would recommend the WaterLase iPlus.
For more information, log on to biolase.com /products/iplus/
Interview with Les Merrell, office manager for Dr. Lucas W. Merrell …
Why did you first start using RevenueWell?
My primary purpose for using RevenueWell (revenuewell.com) was to relieve my front desk from some of the confirmations they must make. On a typical day, they would have to make 50-plus calls to confirm a single day and that takes more than an hour. Not tying up a receptionist (to confirm appointments) allows them to welcome patients, check in and check out patients, and answer the incoming phone calls.
How has it made an impact on the practice?
I believe that RevenueWell has allowed my front desk to excel in the things that they do best, and that is welcoming our patients and making them feel at “home.” Not having them tied up on a phone to confirm appointments lets them spend time with patients, which makes the patients more at ease and ultimately builds the practice by forming a sense of family. Our motto is, “May all who enter as patients leave as friends.” We strive hard to make that happen and I feel RevenueWell has allowed the front desk the opportunity to fulfill that goal.
What would you tell others about why RevenueWell would be a good fit for their practice?
The other benefits that accompany RevenueWell are the icing on the cake in my opinion. One is the ability for patients to create and manage their own patient accounts. The patients’ ability to see upcoming appointments, make appointment requests, send a payment, etc., empower them and ultimately act as an additional employee that works around the clock for our practice. Also, the most surprisingly accepted and unique attribute of the RevenueWell system is the text and email communication(s). The amount of patients that would prefer communication from those two methods continue to surprise me. As we continue to cycle through the recall period, we are noticing a high percentage of patients that request those two forms of communication. We have yet to fully utilize the potential of the RevenueWell system, but even if it didn’t have extra features (yet to be used) we would still be extremely satisfied! RevenueWell acts as a hard-working dedicated employee with whom we are well pleased with, and allows our actual employees the opportunity to excel in the things that separate our practice from others.
COMPONEER is an easy-to-use system for quality, esthetic dental restorations.
Much like an architect would look at plans for a new skyscraper, Dr. Frank Milnar of St. Paul, Minn., views COMPONEER pre-fabricated composite veneers from Coltene as innovative, creative restoration at your fingertips.
“There is a wide variety of knowledge about natural tooth structure in our profession. However, what is also needed is knowledge about natural beauty,” Dr. Milnar said. “From a practical standpoint, this product confirms the morphology of teeth and helps with the architectural design of beautiful smiles. I see COMPONEER as a product that alleviates a lot of stress for the dentist who might have to create anatomical planes and contours to give teeth a natural look.”
According to the manufacturer, COMPONEER are polymerised, pre-fabricated nano-hybrid-composite enamel shells, which combine the advantages of direct composite restoration with those of lab-made veneers.
“COMPONEER has added more versatility for me and my practice,” Dr. Milnar said. “I have more options now for patients. A patient may not fall into a group that needs a direct bonding veneer or an indirect veneer. With COMPONEER, they don’t have to. This is a versatile product that can benefit a wide range of socio-economic patients.”
For Dr. Milnar, one of the most exciting things about the product is not only the present benefits, but also what can be done in the future.
“This is a restoration that can be modified or repaired in the future,” he said. “That’s one of the most compelling features to me. It’s a product that is adjustable and that’s a big benefit for patients. Simply stated, the COMPONEER combines bio-mechanics and bio-esthetics against a minimal intervention backdrop.”
For more information, log on to us.componeer.info.
OptiBond XTR is a self-etch, light-cure dental adhesive that provides outstanding bond strengths to dentin and enamel.
“For years, we were always searching for the best bonding agents for the different scenarios that we face in dentistry,” Dr. Harris said. “It got to a point where we had to make special flow charts for the seven different cement and bonding systems we used.”
Dr. Harris converted to OptiBond XTR bonding agent when he switched to NX3 resin cement for all of his porcelain crowns and quickly gained a sense of security in the product.
“After a few months, we felt confident enough to use OptiBond XTR as our bonding agent for all resins also,” Dr. Harris explained. “It’s nice to have one system that does everything. Simplicity means less chairside stress for doctors and less confusion for dental assistants. I also loved the clean up and absence of sensitivity when I use it in combination with NX3.”
For more information, log on to kerrdental.com/kerrdental-bonding-optibond-xtr-2.
Midwest Automate provides consistent and reliable handpiece maintenance, including advanced cleaning and delivering precise amounts of lubricant.
In Dr. Farhad Foroughi’s busy practice in Bradenton, Fla., peace of mind and efficiency is worth its weight in gold. That’s one of the reasons why he is such a firm believer in the DENTSPLYMidwest Automate system.
“The Automate takes all of the guesswork out of the handpiece maintenance process,” Dr. Foroughi said. “It’s a fully automated system that does all of the work for you. My assistants love it because it’s fast, it’s automated, and it’s efficient. They plug it in and it does its work. When it’s done, we know that our handpieces have been properly oiled and vented. There’s no wondering or second-guessing.
“I’ve had the Automate for almost a year, and I know we haven’t sent any handpieces out for repair during that time. In the long run, I know this machine will keep my handpieces in better shape, meaning I will have to do less repair work. That also means less down time and a more productive practice.”
For more information, log on to dentsply.com.
The 3M True Definition Scanner is an accurate CAD/CAM system that can be used for long-span bridges, multi-unit restorations and full-arch dentistry.
Dr. Adam Hodges was interested in incorporating a scanner into his Asheville, N.C., dental practice, but wasn’t so sure a mill was really necessary. With that thought in mind, Dr. Hodges purchased a 3M™ True Definition Scanner from 3M ESPE and has found it was the right choice for him.
“It has been a very affordable way for us to enter the digital workflow,” Dr. Hodges said. “Our patients have really had a fantastic response to it. They enjoy the technology and they love seeing the 3D scans. They often comment that we are on the cutting edge with our technology.”
Dr. Hodges has also found that the technology has redefined his relationship with his lab.
“It really streamlines the process,” Dr. Hodges explained. “The 3M True Definition Scanner is very predictable and eliminates some of the minutia work that the lab was previously having to do. It gives us very robust scans and allows for incredible accuracy, giving the lab the chance to focus on high-quality ceramic work instead of being distracted by small details.”
For more information, log on to 3M.com/TrueDefinition.
Dr. Cynthia K. Brattesani is a long-time DEXIS owner. Last month, she discussed digital imaging technologies that have and still are making a difference in her practice and in patient care. We wanted to find out more about how she uses one specific product, DEXIS go®. Here is what she said.
When did you start using DEXIS go?
About a year ago, as soon as it came out! When the iPad® was first launched, I noticed that it created an emotional spark in people. I wanted that spark in my office and with my patients. So, I looked for ways to integrate my X-ray images on the iPad for patient education. At that time I tried several screen-sharing programs, but none of them provided all of the integration I needed with my various types of imaging and patient information. DEXIS go provided more options because it was developed as a response to dentists’ needs.
Related Reading: Innovator Profile: DEXISCariVu is caries detection reinvented
What are some of the benefits you had switching to DEXIS go?
DEXIS go allows me to create an imaging hub on the iPad. I can bring up an intra-oral X-ray, camera or CariVu™ image with very good imaging quality. I can focus or enlarge a specific area on a tooth. It’s quick and easy, and the DEXIS go app can go anywhere in the office. I love that the patients can get so close to the image; they can hold it right in their hands. For me, it sets up an opportunity to discuss treatment more clearly and succinctly.
DEXIS GO allows for integration of X-ray images on the iPad for patient education.
How do you use the DEXIS go app?
My monitors are behind the patient, so I can see all of the images for diagnosis and treatment on the monitor and choose which ones I want to display on the iPad for patient education. Too many images confuse the patient and garble my message - it’s information overload! DEXIS go solved that problem. I sit next to the patients, have them hold the iPad, and together, we concentrate on a specific image or area of interest on the iPad and discuss treatment options. It’s very personalized - all about communication and co-discovery.
Now that you’ve been using DEXIS go for about a year, what can you tell us about how it’s affected
It’s become second nature for us to use our iPads and share information with our patients. The iPad with DEXIS go is now part of my instrument tray armamentarium along with my mirror and explorer. It has changed the way I communicate. Now, it is not like I just want it -I need it. Existing patients expect it, and new patients love it! It enhances my communication. Patients are very curious. They say that my technology shows that I care about the best way to deliver my message to them.
Editor’s Note: Dr. Brattesani has no financial interest in DEXIS, LLC.
ESX Rotary File is designed for powerful, yet minimally invasive performance,maximizing the long-term success of the treated tooth.
Dr. Allen Ali Nasseh of Boston recently spoke about a system that has made a big impact in his endodontic practice.
I’ve been using bioceramic based bonded obturation in my endodontic practice for the past six years. I switched from vertical condensation using thermoplastic gutta-percha six years ago based on the obvious advantages of bioceramic science over traditional cement materials. You can say that I was an early adopter. But I made my decision based on the understanding of this material’s chemistry and its established analogues on the market. While I took advantage of the benefits of bioceramics in my practice during this time, it wasn’t until a year ago, when the shear magnitude of positive publications supporting this material reached critical mass, that the endodontic community became aware of the applications and the potential ramifications of bonded endodontics.
The idea of bonding gutta-percha cones inside the root canal vs. thermoplasticizing and compacting them vertically or laterally has wide reaching implications. These implications are beyond the potential for a simpler, more effective obturation technique, and encompass retooling our entire concept of instrumentation. For the better half of the past century, endodontic instrumentation has been coupled to obturation due to obturation’s requirements for large enough shapes conducive to compaction. Now that compaction is unnecessary due to bonded obturation, a new instrumentation era has begun. The new era has seen the first minimally invasive instrumentation and obturation system named ESX® that was developed from the grounds up - during the last year -with the sole purpose of taking advantage of this new obturation philosophy and provides a minimally invasive 0.04 constant taper shape using rotary NiTi instrumentation.
The advantages of a minimally invasive preparation obturated with a bonded, biocompatible cement such as bioceramic based BC Sealer® (Brasseler USA) has wide ranging implications for endodontic therapy. This efficient concept of instrumentation and obturation will surely transform endodontics from its historical marriage to the concept of reducing sealer interfaces by thermoplasticising gutta- percha cones to the new era of bonded endodontics.
All-Bond Universal combines etching, priming and bonding in one bottle.
Dr. Ronald E. Rosenblatt recently spoke with DPR about how BISCO’sAll-Bond Universal adhesive and Duo-Link Universal resin cement have made an impact on the way he does cosmetic and reconstructive dentistry.
I have been doing composite restorations on recession and abrasion for many years. It has always been a problem to get dentin bonding properly. I have gone through many products and All-Bond Universal has been without a question, the best thing that has ever happened to my practice.
Initially, I was a little skeptical of this product. I tried to pry the composite off of the tooth, but I was not able to do it. This proved to me that this product works really well. It has really changed my practice because I am able to use it with complete certainty that it will do a good job. Up until now, I have never had this success with any other product and I have had to use mechanical retention beyond the bonding. Using All-Bond Universal allows me to do the restoration without mechanical retention.
The best benefit of this product is the conservative nature in which I am able to restore teeth by using it without having to compromise the tooth structure. The main difference that I have seen in my work is that I am not only able to get a fine restoration, but I am able to do all of them without anesthesia. This is a major difference because I come out as a hero for those patients who don’t want to have anesthesia because they are very happy to have a painless procedure.
Bisco is continually improving its materials and my guess is that at some point in the near future they will be offering an even better bonding material, even though I am extremely happy with the current one.
I am also very pleased with Bisco’s Duo-Link Universal resin cement because it offers dual curing with an easy clean-up. This is great because there are always areas that are hard to cure. This product is easily par or better than any other cement I have used.
As my practice population ages, we get more recession and gingival erosion. So, we are expecting to see and treat more of this. With the universal bond, I am able to do full facial composite restorations that are long lasting and provide esthetic results. I am really looking forward to less invasive dentistry through the use of this great bonding material.
Cone beam 3D scans by i-CAT FLX have changed the way that Dr. Anthony LaVacca diagnoses, treats, and educates his patients. We asked him to share his insights on this practice-changing imaging system.
How did you choose the i-CAT® FLX for your practice?
With a growing amount of implant patients, I wanted the entire process from diagnosis to placement to be as seamless as possible. After using CBCT scans for quite a while through an imaging center, I realized that the information that scans provide is very valuable to a clinician. When I began to perform more complex cases, I felt that I needed a 3D cone beam scanner of my own. It was important to me to get a scanner that gave me control over radiation dose, and i-CAT FLX fulfilled that need. With the low-dose setting (QuickScan+), I can take a full-dentition 3D scan with a dose comparable to a 2D panoramic X-ray.
What are the benefits that you have seen over the past year?
The i-CAT FLX allows me to take post-operative scans at low radiation exposure to see if the implant is where it should be. For example, with 2D imaging, an implant can look like it is positioned perfectly straight when in reality, it is in a buccal undercut or out of the graft material altogether. Also, the scan is an amazing diagnostic tool for patient education. I show the patient where and why I am placing the implant on the 3D scan. I can zoom in or rotate the image to a certain area of concern or interest. I have seen that this builds confidence and rapport with my patients. It sets me apart from practitioners and builds credibility in my dental community.
i-CAT FLX Cone Beam 3D system provides scanning flexibility and an ergonomic stability system to minimize patient movement.
How does having an i-CAT FLX affect your workflow?
i-CAT has many tools that make the implant process more precise. The company slogan, “from scan to plan to treat” is really true. Tx STUDIO™ gives me the capability to select the perfect size implant for the surgery, and now take full advantage of using surgical guides. I select the most suitable implant in the software to select the appropriate position and take advantage of guided surgery to make sure that position is maintained. I am part of a multi-specialty practice that includes an orthodontist, and i-CAT FLX with Tx STUDIO also has applications for orthodontics, oral surgery, and endodontics that, I believe, helps in offering our patients the most efficient and most contemporary dental care possible.
Editor’s Note: Dr. LaVacca has no financial interests in Imaging Sciences/i-CAT. Indications For Use found at i-cat.com/IFU