Tip: How to exceed the esthetic expectations of patients
The dentist inserts a new lithium disilicate (shade A2) restoration in the patient’s mouth. The patient is overjoyed: The colour, shape, translucency and all the details are perfect.
However, what happens if the patient feels that the tooth colour is too dark or that the tooth shape does not suit them? This is a tricky situation. We have a few hints and tips for you on how you, together with your dentist, can avoid these situations and perhaps even exceed the expectations of the patient.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
Beauty is a subjective quality. The perception of what is beautiful differs from one person to another. There is no right or wrong in this situation.
A number of factors influence the esthetic appearance of dental restorations, which should all be carefully considered. They include, for example, the tooth shade, the tooth shape and the dental material selected for the restoration
Good communication is indispensable
To prevent any misunderstandings with regard to the esthetic expectations of patients, the members of the expert dental team, the dentist and the dental technician, must collaborate very closely. Good communication is needed to convey the esthetic needs of the patient properly and satisfy the requirements of all the parties involved. The best planning strategy is useless, if information is poorly disseminated and the individual team members do not work together effectively. In short: An intensive exchange of information must take place between the dental technician and the dentist. This is a fundamental prerequisite for a satisfying outcome.
Overall harmonious appearance
For a dental restoration to look naturally beautiful, the shape and colour of the tooth should blend in harmoniously with the overall appearance of the patient.
It is important for you to speak to your dentist and explain what kind of information you need in order to satisfy all the requirements, so that you will not have to second guess the situation.
You will need to ask your dentist for the following data:
- Clear photos of the overall appearance of the patient
- Detailed information about the original colour of the teeth
- Detailed information about the individual characteristics of the teeth
- Exact information about the preparation colour
These specifications are of utmost importance for your dental laboratory. They will allow you to select the most suitable restorative material.
Dental technicians are specialists
You the dental technician are a materials specialist. You have extensive knowledge and expertise in the esthetic properties and applications of dental materials. Your experience in producing restorations using the press technique and in milling monolithic ceramics using CAD/CAM techniques and your command of various layering methods and the corresponding materials plays a decisive role in the fabrication of highly esthetic restorations.
Clever use of intelligent technologies
Intelligent technologies are available, which are designed to improve the flow of information between the dental laboratory and the dental practice: for example, the free IPS e.max Shade Navigation App (SNA). It takes into consideration the main parameters of materials selection. The app selects a suitable block or disc from the IPS e.max materials portfolio on the basis of the entered tooth colour, indication, preparation colour, material thickness and the material.
Augmented reality planning tools, for example IvoSmile, allow dental professionals to involve the patient in the treatment process while they are seated in the dental chair – and therefore prevent any unpleasant surprises. The patient is given the opportunity to clearly visualize the new teeth in their mouth at the beginning of the treatment. As a result, they can express their opinions regarding the tooth shape and shade and contribute to the planning process.
Photos and files can be transmitted to all the parties involved, so that everyone is given the same impression of the situation. Therefore, the risk of false expectations and misinterpretations is considerably reduced.
Conclusion: success due to excellent teamwork, modern technologies and top-quality materials
By closely collaborating with your dental partners and involving the patient in the planning of the treatment process, you can improve the understanding of the case at hand within your team of experts consisting of dental technicians and dentists and therefore fulfil or even exceed the expectations of the patients. A broad knowledge base combined with intelligent technologies and modern, highly esthetic all-ceramic materials will help you to achieve amazing results.
Discover unprecedented possibilities with the proven IPS e.max system.