by Dr Karan Baran, United Dental Clinic, Warriewood, NSW
The purchase of the 3Shape scanner completed the transformation of United Dental into a completely digital practice. We’ve done away with old school, conventional impressions and use the scanner for crown and bridge work, veneers, digital smile designs and implants.
What’s good about it
One of the biggest advantages is that it saves a lot of my time. We’ve trained our nurses to do the pre-prep scans which allows me to work on another patient while that’s taking place. It’s a much more efficient method of time management.
The turnaround time from the laboratory is much better because we’re not relying on couriers to pick up from us. This also frees up a lot of time for the reception staff because previously they had to check everything was packed properly, call the couriers, then wait for the courier to hand it over. The 3Shape scanner has streamlined the whole process while saving time and allowing our staff to be more productive.
The scanning is fast, and the results are quick to appear. It’s also a good educational tool for patients. We can take intraoral photographs with the scanner, and for our Invisalign patients, we generate a simulation showing what their smile looks like before and after. It’s said that a picture speaks 1000 words and the moment they see what their teeth could look like, they’re ready to sign up. It’s made life really easy.
What’s not so good
The biggest disadvantage is that the software packages are sold separately. If you want implant software, you have to purchase that and then pay a yearly subscription. It’s the same for the orthodontic package. It’s not cheap but I think it offers value for money. At the same time, I’m extremely reluctant to add on software packages that I wouldn’t use on a regular basis.