For the last several years, 3D scanning and printing technology has been changing the way products are produced in almost every industry, including advancements in the orthodontic industry. At McGrory Orthodontics, we strive to bring the latest and most innovative orthodontic techniques and technology to our patients in Pearland, Bellaire, and beyond. Our team is always looking for ways to make the entire orthodontic process less invasive and more efficient. Adding 3D scanning technology to our practice has allowed us to provide an extra element of ease in preparing for treatment with braces. Let’s take a closer look at what means!
The 3D scanning process
There’s a good deal of prep work involved before traditional braces can be placed, including x-rays, intraoral photographs, and a goopy alginate impression that can make some patients gag. Each step is an important part of the process, allowing our doctors to create an individualized treatment plan for each patient based on their specific orthodontic needs.
Aside from preparing for braces, we would previously use plaster to make a stone model of the teeth, then send that through the mail to a lab that would construct a retainer, expander, space maintainer, or Herbst appliance for us. While this traditional process was reliable, it was less accurate and added 2-3 more appointments in total for patients. That’s where iTero® digital scanning comes in!
Instead of messy impressions, our scanner scans each tooth individually, and the layout of the gums and mouth, too. The whole process only takes less than twenty minutes and provides us with an extremely accurate 3D view of the mouth in very little time. Once the scan has been completed, we can view the images along with the patient and are even able to see a simulation of the braces or Invisalign® treatment plan that’s being considered. This data can then be sent to an orthodontic lab wirelessly. The lab will print a 3D stereolithographic model, create the appliance needed, and have it back to our office in about a week. Less time and greater accuracy is a win-win for everybody involved!
How high tech can work for you at McGrory Orthodontics
As orthodontic providers, iTero 3D scanning means we are able to offer our patients an exceptional level of individualized orthodontic treatment. Our high-tech equipment gives us the most accurate images available and eliminates the mess and time involved in traditional processing. Because scanning guarantees us a more accurate look at the mouth, we can provide patients with a superior fit, increasing comfort levels across the board.
Being able to scan devices in our Pearland or Bellaire office is incredibly convenient in a number of ways, many of which are outlined above. Having ready access to scans means we are also able to adjust or reprint as necessary. This makes the orthodontic journey faster for patients and decreases the total amount of time spent in our office.
When it comes to straightening smiles, appliances are just one part of the story! To learn more about how high-tech orthodontics can work for you and your smile, contact our talented team to request a tour of one or both of our offices, or give us a call to set up an initial consultation. We’d love to meet you and get you started on the path to an awesome smile!