Dental aesthetics is something meaningful to many Americans, but the cost of treatment is often out of sight. According to Health line, a veneer can cost anywhere north of $250 per tooth – that’s $8,000 for a full set of adult teeth. Bringing the charge against these costs is 3D printing, which will reliably reduce costs while allowing your dentist to make your ideal teeth a reality.
How does it work?
It’s important to note that 3D printing of teeth and associated items like veneers can only be undertaken by experienced dentists. Dental health is an all-in system where veneers on their own don’t represent a full picture of oral health, so it’s important to have good holistic care. 3D printing of dentistry products is as simple as it sounds; given that most modern veneers and related products are created from composite plastics, 3D printing gurus All 3DP note that it has been an easy transition towards on-the-job creation.
Is there a catch?
Specialized parts cannot yet be created via 3D printing. Furthermore, not every dentist has the capability or willingness, given supply contracts, to start producing their own oral products. To date, night guards, retainers, crowns, models and veneers are widespread. In the future, you can expect to see more complicated techniques developed and disseminated through 3D printing. 3D printing is currently not as cheap as it could be, though the price of materials and increasing interest in 3D printing mean that this could change in the next few years.
As 3D printing becomes more and more advanced – current techniques work with metal, plastic and composite materials – it won’t be outside the realms of possibility to see entire sets of teeth created. Smart devices like toothbrushes already have the capability to ‘map’ the mouth, and with this data in hand, dentists will be able to use 3D printing to exactly create dentures and replacement teeth to fit your mouth and keep you happy.
Dentistry is one of the industries that stands to benefit the most from 3D printing. The re-usable and sterile nature of 3D operations and how that ties into the products aesthetic dentistry demands has made this a reality. While dentistry is sometimes out of touch and unaffordable for all but the most pressing of issues, the change in the way products are now being created can put your own goals within reach.