3D printing is transforming industries ranging from dentistry to footwear. Growing demand for dental appliances like aligners, retainers, and night guards combined with the latest advancements in digital dentistry and 3D printing provides offices many manufacturing advantages over using an external dental lab or service bureau.
Using 3D printing for dental manufacturing requires selecting the appropriate 3D printing materials and resins. There is a broad and growing range of 3D printing materials and resins for dental manufacturing. Different appliances can benefit from these dental materials to improve performance, fit, and production time. Using the right 3D printing solution and materials can enable new business models in the dental industry, both for practitioners and service providers like dental labs.
Why Choosing the Right 3D Printing System is Important?
3D printers implement specific printing processes that need to match compatible materials and end-use products. Dentists and service providers can use specific 3D printing systems to transform their businesses while also delivering high-quality dental appliances to their customers.
Simplified workflow/Reduced Post Processing
The best 3D printing systems for dental manufacturing use an optical process with biocompatible photosensitive resins, enabling batch dental manufacturing with high throughput, quality, and biocompatibility. This process ensures safety, improves the patient’s experience, and helps expedite treatment. It also enables a new business model for dentists and dental labs to produce appliances, post-process them, and complete delivery to the customer on the same day.
Product Quality and Printing Accuracy
Because dental appliances are highly customized, they need to be manufactured with very high accuracy to ensure a patient’s comfortable fit. Optical 3D printing with resins is one of the most accurate processes for one-off customization and critical for high-quality 3D printed dental appliances. Today’s advanced 3D printing systems don’t sacrifice speed for quality. They are cost-competitive compared to traditional or computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) processes for dental appliances.
3D printing requires specific software that can translate a CAD model for a product into printing instructions; the best printers provide a specialized software package that makes this conversion seamless. The synergy between 3D printing and compatible software helps achieve a standard that isn’t obtained by mixing and matching different materials and printing systems.
This bundled package also speeds up the printing workflow and ensures products are of the highest quality. The user can tailor the system to the specific product application, which streamlines the user’s workflow. These types of systems have enabled efficient 3D manufacturing for a range of unique products, including dental appliances, footwear, medical devices, and much more.