Put on Your Best Smile – Ideas for Dental 3D Printing

One of the many industries that have been heavily influenced by 3D printing technology is definitely dentistry. After 2011, 3D printing has started to become more popular and available together with some new printing materials. This, in turn, has resulted in more and more dentists replacing their old time-consuming techniques and procedures, with new ones that are more convenient and reduce the overall cost in the long run. In this blog post, I’ll talk about some of the new ideas that have been introduced in the field of dentistry.

One of the most common applications that 3D printing has in dentistry are transparent aligners and night guards. They act as a replacement for braces and in recent years they have become a more popular choice. A full 3D scan of a patient’s mouth needs to be taken before a 3D model is rendered on a computer software. For this, the dentist will need to know the exact measurements so that the printing of an aligner or a night guard can begin. There’s an additional phase when printing aligners – during the printing of the model a vacuum is applied so that a sheet of plastic is formed on top of it.


Precision is a key factor when making surgical guides, which is where 3D printing machines come helpful as they take just a fraction of the time typically needed. Guided surgery provides a solution where the dentist can plan an implant virtually, and then accurately place it in the safest, most predictable, and efficient way. Printing a 3D model of a patient’s mouth gives the dentist a chance to check everything beforehand when prepping for a surgery and make sure that a certain implant fits a certain spot. With 3D models, a quick scan can provide enough information for printing and there’s no need for a special resin or indispensable technologies to be used.

The making of crowns is no different – the patient’s mouth gets scanned and a model of it is later printed. However, there are two ways this can be done, which can change the end of the whole process a little bit. Either a special resin will be used to get a solid and strong structure like porcelain, or a CNC machine will have to be used to cut out the shape of the crown after the printing is done. Nonetheless, the total time needed to make this is reduced to less than an hour, while before this technology the entire process used to last up to several weeks.

Surgical tools can be really expensive, but 3D printing machines are starting to change the game. The primary goal of this technology is printing tools, which saves a lot of money in the long run and saves a tremendous amount of time for everyone. No wonder why the initial cost of these machines is so high.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.