Digital Impressions: De-Gooping Dentistry


What’s the first thing you think of when someone mentions having impressions taken at the dental office?  For many patients, the answer is the same—GOOP!  Although sinking your teeth into impression material has been a common practice for years (and is still used for some procedures), select dental practices have opted for and invested in the technology to provide digital impressions to patients for a number of procedures. 

Such offices may utilize an iTero® scanner to take a 3D digital scan of the patient’s teeth and bite in lieu of traditional dental impressions for many procedures.  The extremely refined data and measurements are saved so that they can prepare everything needed to have the restoration(s) made and send the information directly to the lab to do so. 
A few of the many advantages of iTero® digital impressions:
• This technology can be used for a wide variety of dental procedures—crowns, bridges, onlays, restorations on implants, veneers, and even Invisalign®, just to name a few!
• Many patients are uncomfortable with traditional impressions in general and having the “goop” in their mouth—this is especially common for those with sensitive gag reflexes.  Digital impressions eliminate this potential obstacle for patients, making treatment more comfortable!
• Treatment can be completed more efficiently for patients—all of the scans and information are collected and reviewed by the doctor in real time.  This saves patients time in their already busy schedules, getting them back to things they’d “rather” be doing, sooner!
• For visual learners and everyone’s inner-scientist, patients can see a high-resolution, 3D view of their teeth instantaneously—to think that this is possible with technology—dentistry sure has come a long way!

Digital impressions offer a distinct advantage over traditional impressions in terms of patient comfort and efficiency for patients.  Additionally, the precision available with this technology allows dentists to even further enhance the functionality and esthetics of the restorations they provide for patients.

Article by
Columbia Dentist