Digital 3D dental models are much more accurate than physical imprints and because files are digital they never change or break over time. Digital impressions provide wonderful diagnostic tools and amazing patient education and communication tools. At their basic level, CAD scanners are designed to provide detailed information about the size and shape of intraoral structures.
Digital scanning of chairmen itself is not a new phenomenon, but the changing role of chairmen is new. The day will come when a digital scanner will be standard in every dental operating theatre and the handpiece will be cured by light.
If a practice does not have its own milling unit, a popular alternative to digital chair scanning is to send the digital workflow to the laboratory of choice. Generally, a practice sends several indirect units to a digital workflow laboratory, giving the dentist the ability to select laboratory materials and processing time so that the dentist can maintain control over the entire process. Regardless of the application of the scanner, skills and care of the operator are still required.
In addition, there are a lot of manual file repairs and the use of automated file repair tools is required to achieve optimal results from the files. If you are in the archaeological department, the optimal scanner depends on whether you kept it at the university or whether it wandered through the Sahel for years. There are also problems due to the accuracy limitations of intraoral scanners, especially with larger implants in some cases.
Burbank Dental Labs is a strong advocate of the benefits of a full digital workflow. We came across the disadvantages of this type of case early on and did a lot of research to solve the problem of multi-unit scans. This prompted us to invest in breakthrough technologies such as Imetric4DS and ICAM4D extraoral scanners.
Intraoral scanners and CBCT machines are the biggest cost factors for the leap into 3D printing. Intraoral scanning costs for itself in crown and bridge dentistry, while CBCT scanning for implant dentistry and pre-surgical scans pays for itself. So, $18-20k USD is a ton of money, don't get me wrong, but this is a key technology that I can't live without in my clinical practice.
In my opinion, one of the best scanners emerging from this trio is the 3shape scanner. These scanners are quick, quick to set up, easy to use and beneficial in practice in the long term. I have created a number of comparison criteria that serve as a basis for comparing intraoral scanners.
It is the only wireless intraoral scanner available that makes the entire scanning process a seamless and enjoyable experience. For example, practitioners do not think for a moment about performing a full arc scan of the patient. In terms of runtime, the scanner can run for up to 20 minutes without delays or connection problems, and as mentioned above, battery life can be improved as the scanner tends to run on power when connected to a power source.
Compared to other scanners on the market, they range from $18,000 to $70,000, depending on the type of scanner, so the premium is more affordable than this generation of scanners. Remember that this scanner comes with a powerful MSI GS65 laptop, which cost about $2000 at the time of writing this review, whereas other scanners do not. The manufacturer claims that the MEDIT i500 is an easy way for dentists to make the transition to digital dentistry, but offers no useful features and is one of the most expensive intraoral scanners on the market.
The MEDIT i500 maintains the surface of the tooth or gum to be scanned, unlike other intraoral scanners such as the Trios 4 protocol, which does the same with an iOS scanner. The scanning manual makes the scanning of narrow areas difficult and is due to the size of the scanner itself a bit cumbersome.
At 110 grams, the WOW scanner is light, but about twice as heavy as most scanners and about a quarter the size of this one. High performance laptops are included, and we were surprised to find that all the laptops included with the WOW are quite fast.
The handheld device comes with a software toolkit for structured and easy scanning of medium-sized objects. The laptop that comes with the WOW scanner is something that I have never seen on any other intraoral scanner on the market, but it is simple and a great idea. The easy-to-use scanner software helps you quickly identify what you need to scan, and the device is idiot-proof, so it can do almost anything at the moment.
Artificial intelligence (AI) in the scanner is responsible for piecing together the scanned data and removing artifacts. The Carestream CS-3500 Intraoral Scanner Practitioners can create true-color 3D images using the CS-Restore software specifically designed for restoration. The only intraoral scanner with blue laser technology whose small wavelength (450 nm) results in sharp images.
In my opinion, optical scanning is a key part of the use of 3D printing in the dental practice. You can use the CBCT scanner to scan alginate stone models and devices, import them into a variety of software packages and then convert them ready for 3D printing with CBCT or DICOM STL files. An early application for me was the use of my first 3D printer to create models of surgical guides and bleach bowls.
Try renting scanners to try them out before you buy the scanner. The more expensive scanners tend to work faster, require less manual work and have a higher resolution. I bought a MEDIT i500 scanner for my lap because they wanted to use it, which of course did not happen because he did not want to sit and read with him, but I still have the strong feeling that I am good at CAD and X-ray.