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The Next Great Addition to Your Practice.. and Your Pocket

The Next Great Addition to Your Practice.. and Your Pocket

The Next Great Addition to Your Practice… and Your Pocket.

By Daniel Lewis

OpalPix between teeth cleaners

Sharing job perks with our friends and family is generally awesome, regardless of your field. I have a carpenter friend who’s thrilled when another buddy asks him to help remodel a kitchen. Another friend works at a bike shop and lights up when I ask her about fork suspension. But working in the dental industry, it’s hard for me to share pieces of my job with those around me—let’s face it, the party doesn’t exactly light up if I arrive with an ultrasonic scaler and some prophy angles.

This was the case until I had some Opalpix™ interproximal cleaners with me at a barbecue last weekend. And yes, I know “try these interproximal cleaners!” might not sound like a line that spurs elation at a party… but bear with me, because Opalpix cleaners are far from the average toothpick.

Ribs, corn on the cob, and ribeye steaks were on the menu. All of those leave a graveyard of meal scraps stuck throughout the teeth—especially when you gnaw on the bone of a ribeye like a caveman. (We’ve all done it. It’s not pretty, but we’ve all done it.)

With a table full of family experiencing the post-meal annoyance of trying to pluck food from between their teeth (in a socially acceptable manner), I reached into my pocket and pulled out a pack of Opalpix cleaners. They circulated around the table, with each person immediately becoming a fan of the comfortable design—and asking for their own pack.

Opalpix interproximal cleaner tips
The thin tip design allows easy cleaning access and won’t splinter or break.

My niece with braces was especially relieved, as Opalpix cleaners are great for working between bonded retainers.

I can’t say my family noticed the textured surface (or the perfect balance of flexibility and rigidity). I highly doubt they realized that they were massaging interproximal tissue while also removing plaque/debris. What they noticed is simple: Opalpix cleaners work—a whole lot better than any toothpick, fingernail, or other object they’ve used (that probably make dentists shudder, like my uncle and his pocketknife) to “clean-up” after a meal.

While Opalpix cleaners are made for anyone and everyone, clinicians can receive an added marketing benefit by offering them to patients. Personalized stickers can be added to the packs, so when Opalpix cleaners are used and shared by patients, everyone will see your name and practice attached.

Opalpix Interproximal Cleaners in a box of 32
Each individual pack contains 32 Opalpix cleaners.

Whether used to help advertise your office, or just to help folks clear their mouths of debris after a great meal, Opalpix cleaners are a perfect addition to your practice—and your pocket.

Unfortunately, when I left the barbecue my pack of Opalpix cleaners stayed behind. I’d like to pretend I left them as a kind gesture to the hosts, my parents. That’s not the case. I went to grab them and was told, very clearly, I wouldn’t be taking them. Yes, my mom stole a pack of Opalpix cleaners from me—I can easily get another pack at work… but don’t tell her, I need this one.


See original Ultradent post here.

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Knowledge and Service at Your Fingertips

Knowledge and Service at Your Fingertips

Knowledge and Service at Your Fingertips

The BISCO team, which is based in Schaumburg, IL, is dedicated to understanding and improving restorative dentistry.


Innovation aside, even the most advanced dental materials on the market would be useless without the knowledge of how to use them to their fullest potential.

Not unlike its winning team of go-to restorative products that work together to deliver excellent clinical results, BISCO harbors a human team of dedicated sales and customer service professionals who undergo extensive training—not only on the manufacturer’s key products and indications, but the restorative procedure itself.

Solving Clinical Problems Is a Team Effort

While the BISCO sales team is the first line of defense in answering doctors’ product-related queries and concerns, some questions require more of a team effort—for example, tapping into different tiers of knowledge offered by members of BISCO’s clinical, scientific, or R&D teams.

“I have called BISCO customer service on several occasions with product questions or order issues and have always found them to be friendly and attentive to my concerns,” said Dr. Martin. “My questions are answered promptly and always directed to the proper person.”

According to the manufacturer, when a doctor calls in with a question or an issue—whether they are a customer or not—the goal first and foremost is to solve their problem. “The BISCO sales and customer service team is great—they are knowledgeable about their products, always go the extra mile, and will not sell you products you don’t need,” added Dr. Pasenkoff.

Visit to learn more about the science behind BISCO restorative solutions.

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Debunking Single-Patient-Use Fallacies

Debunking Single-Patient-Use Fallacies


Debunking Single-Patient-Use Fallacies

“Damn Good Dentist” Sancerie O’Rourke-Allen, DDS, MAGD, discovers what's fact and what's fiction when it comes to single-patient-use burs.

Single-use dental products have skyrocketed in demand after COVID-19 and the amplification of infection control protocols—and yet there are still some dentists who are skeptical about the quality and effectiveness of disposable instruments like burs and polishers. Dr. Sancerie O’Rourke-Allen admits she was initially hesitant to give single-use burs a try.

“I thought that the diamonds might be of poor quality since they were only supposed to be used once,” the Baton Rouge, LA, clinician shared. It wasn't until a recent DPS product evaluation, while prepping for 8 crowns with a NeoDiamond bur from Microcopy, that she realized the quality was far better than she anticipated. “The power and smoothness of the bur remained—even by the end of the job.”

With its durable design and fast-cutting capability, NeoDiamond demystifies the misconceptions surrounding single-patient-use burs. Featuring advanced Triton bonding technology that allows bur tips to cut crisp, clear margins, NeoDiamond’s performance is comparable to costlier multiuse diamonds—but without the fear of cross-contamination between patients or hassle of cleaning the instrument after every use.

“Now, more than ever, patients are watching us at every turn. So, it’s nice to show them that I’m taking a fresh bur right out of the pack,” concluded Dr. O’Rourke-Allen.

Visit to join the growing #SPU4U movement

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Proper Barriers Protect Patients

Proper Barriers Protect Patients


Reduce the risk of cross-contamination

In dentistry, it’s long been standard practice to carefully clean and disinfect the examination rooms. From instrument sterilization to the use of barriers and PPE, strict measures have been in place for years to keep the operatory free of the risk of infection. But now, in light of current events, every tool and procedure must be scrutinized even further. The new era we live and practice in requires us to ask whether we're doing enough for infection prevention, and if there is something more we can do to protect our patients.

One area that deserves deeper consideration involves the barriers used to cover equipment such as intraoral sensors, which are considered semicritical infection control devices because they make contact with mucous membranes. The threat of barrier perforation and cross-contamination should be a top concern among dental professionals.

steri-shield elastic coversThe Results Are In

A study conducted by J.W. Choi examining the perforation rate of intraoral barriers for direct digital radiography focused on 4 types of low-dentistry polyethylene barriers with varying thickness levels, as well as a latex finger cot. The study demonstrated that while thickness and the use of a double barrier influenced the perforation rate—which ranged from 22% to 58%—the risk of contamination could not be completely eliminated. However, the results did reveal that the use of a latex finger cot significantly reduced the leakage rate, showing that latex provides increased protection compared to heat-sealed barriers. The study can be accessed at

Latex radiological sensor barriers, such as Steri-Shield’s R.S. Barrier, provide a snug, elastic cover that is easy to put on and take off. Unlike heat-sealed materials, latex barriers have no seams or micro-holes, helping to prevent leakage and ensure greater infection control. The R.S. Barrier, also available in nonlatex, fits all sensor sizes and helps to pad sensor edges for patient comfort.

Visit to view Steri-Shield’s complete line of barriers.

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Doctor’s Favorites: Indirect Restorations

Doctor’s Favorites: Indirect Restorations

Doctor’s Favorites: Indirect Restorations

A graduate of the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health, Jeff Peifer, DMD, practices general dentistry in Gilbert, AZ, with a special interest in cosmetic, implant, and reconstructive dentistry. A member of the ADA, AGD, and Arizona Dental Association, he is passionate about his profession, his family, and the Los Angeles Dodgers—which poses a problem since he lives and practices in Diamondback territory. Here, he discusses his favorite products to use for indirect restorations.

TheraCem from BiscoBISCO’s TheraCem, a self-etching, dual-cured, self-adhesive resin cement, is great for most indirect restorations. It’s easy to clean up, causes minimal to no postoperative sensitivity, and is offered at a great value.

Although I still use retraction cord in some cases, I rely on Dryz retraction paste from Parkell to achieve excellent hemostasis. The material is easy to place with the Luer Lock applicator tip, stays where it’s placed, and provides great retraction and tissue management.

exafastPremier Dental’s Two Striper diamond burs cut very efficiently and seem to remain cooler than other diamonds. With a wide variety of shapes and multiple grits, there are many options to choose from for minimal or gross reduction.

Although I have not yet taken the plunge into intraoral scanning, I plan to embrace digital impressions in the near future. That said, there are still cases where VPS is needed, and GC America’s EXAFAST impression material is amazing and also offers a great value. Available in heavy, injectable, monophase, and regular viscosities, EXAFAST is easy to place, sets up quickly, and provides great detail with no tearing of the impression.

Every office needs an intraoral camera to capture images that they can share with both patients and insurance companies. We have a few Claris intraoral cameras from SOTA Imaging in our office. They are easy to use and take great pictures with phenomenal clarity.

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The Benefits of Being HOClean

The Benefits of Being HOClean

Certified HOClean Badge

The Benefits of Being HOClean

Whether you're looking for an added layer of infection prevention or trying to cut down on the use of harsh chemicals in the office, naturally disinfecting with HOCl fogging provides multiple benefits for both practice and patients.

How It Works

While it may seem complicated, the science behind HOCl fogging is simple. Wipes and sprays formulated with chlorine bleach carry a negative electrical charge that can take up to 30 minutes to eliminate germs. But HOCl carries a neutral charge that, when atomized into an ultrafine mist, penetrates the wall of a negatively charged germ in a matter of seconds.

What Makes HOCl Different?

Safe on the eyes and skin of dental team members and patients
A powerful oxidant that's nontoxic and nonhazardous with a neutral pH
100x more effective than chlorine bleach

Supporting Evidence

It pays to do your research before introducing any new product into your infection prevention protocol. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Environmental Protection Agency, and National Institutes of Health are all great resources to find out about HOCl fogging and how it can impact your practice’s disinfecting routine.

*For direct links to key supporting evidence from these agencies, visit


Click here to see the HOCl fogger in action as it disinfects a dental office waiting room, and more.

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Don’t Stand in the Way of Making Dentistry Fun

Don’t Stand in the Way of Making Dentistry Fun

Don’t Stand in the Way of Making Dentistry Fun

From a simple tool like a digital camera to more complex technologies, such as intraoral scanners and 3D imaging, nothing has influenced and guided my career more than digital technologies. In fact, over the past 2 decades, technology has made practicing dentistry more fun and rewarding than I could have ever imagined. So, I've often wondered why more dentists don't embrace it. Asking that question of my colleagues has revealed the key reasons why dentists hesitate to invest.

Here, I'll share those obstacles and why letting any of them stand in your way of embracing digital technologies is doing yourself, as well as your patients, a major disservice.


It’s the easiest and most frequently used excuse—but it’s also reasonable. While technology still isn’t cheap, it also is no longer expensive. Thanks to increased competition and wider adoption, costs are now half of what they were when I started my digital journey back in 2003. Additionally, borrowing money is now easier, cheaper, and more flexible than ever. Money really shouldn’t stand in the way of growing your practice and creating an environment that makes dentistry fun.


There is often a push to immediately transform your practice and use technology for everything right away. This can be overwhelming for both the doctor and the dental team. Instead, have an expectation and a plan to predictably and logically implement the digital capabilities over time. For example, if you aren’t comfortable taking full-arch digital impressions, just take traditional impressions until you become more comfortable using an intraoral scanner. No one says you have to do it all at once.


When I first considered CAD/CAM, it was all about single-visit crowns. Today, that is the least-valuable benefit of taking digital impressions. Digital technology has democratized advanced dentistry, making a service like dental implants more achievable than ever. Orthodontic treatment is more predictable and patient friendly, too, while sleep apnea is an untapped market with a pool of literally hundreds of potential patients in your practice already. Sleep, ortho, and implant (SOI) procedures—I call it “SOI for real ROI”—are all made easier thanks to digital technologies.

In the September issue of Dental Product Shopper, take a deeper dive into an area of technology that has been disrupting the indirect restorative procedure for over 3 decades—CAD/CAM dentistry. Whether you start with intraoral scanning or jump fully into a sameday restorative workflow, the benefits are likely to extend well beyond simply providing fast and accurate restorations for your patients.

As dentists, we owe it to ourselves and to our patients to take a more thoughtful view of digital technologies. If you keep an open mind, I promise it will positively change your career in more ways than you can imagine. At the very least, I guarantee you’ll have more fun.

Tarun Agarwal, DDS
Dental Product Shopper Editorial Advisory Board

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Thinking About Going Digital? Here’s 3 Reasons to Take the Plunge

Thinking About Going Digital? Here’s 3 Reasons to Take the Plunge

Thinking About Going Digital? Here’s 3 Reasons to Take the Plunge

A couple years ago, Dr. Jason Pujo found himself in a predicament. His compact milling unit died, and after 3 attempts at diagnosing the problem, he came to the sobering conclusion that it was beyond repair. To make matters worse, while researching a few of the leading CAD/CAM systems on the market and getting the scoop from peers who had embraced in-office milling, he was forced to revert back to taking conventional impressions for single-unit crowns.

“Nothing went wrong, but once you embrace CAD/CAM and in-office milling, reverting back to antiquated methods is terrible,” Dr. Pujo shared. After 6 months, he took the plunge and made the switch to Planmeca, receiving his Planmeca Emerald intraoral scanner and Planmeca PlanMill 40 S in January 2019.

Planmill 40 SPlanmeca Emerald S

“I have thoroughly enjoyed using the Planmeca system,” he shared. “The mill is excellent and produces an amazingly precise restoration. I have milled mostly single-unit IPS e.max crowns and partial coverage restorations and they fit fantastic. And, with the precision of the Planmeca Emerald scanner, they rarely need any adjustment out of the mill.”

A Crowd (And Patient) Pleaser

In most cases, Dr. Pujo can tackle scanning, designing, and milling without the help of an assistant. And while the average crown appointment in his Dracut, MA, office now stretches a bit longer than usual, patients have not minded one bit.

“They love the fact that they’re getting it all done in one appointment. And when they watch me design, they can clearly see that I am a perfectionist and know that they’re getting it done right,” said Dr. Pujo, adding that his patients are also very impressed by the technology and appreciative of the fact that he stays up-to-date with the latest tools.

Now Is the Time to Jump In

Whatever your reason is to take—or not take—the plunge into digital restorative dentistry, consider the fact that right now might be the best time to jump in. Like most practices across the country, your office has likely been brainstorming the best ways to recover production lost during the temporary shutdown.

Here’s 3 reasons how adopting a CAD/CAM workflow can help you get back on track, while in the process, make your crown workflow safer, faster, and entirely more fun.

1. No Temporaries—With all the safety precautions surrounding dental appointments during the coronavirus pandemic, the safest play is to eliminate the risk of lost or cracked temporaries that may require an emergency visit.

2. Eliminate Impression Material—Conventional impressions can be a hassle. Not only are they messy and prone to tearing and distortion, but patients find the process uncomfortable—not to mention the risk of bacteria from patients’ mouths being transferred to the hands of lab techs or dental team members.

3. Less Chair Time—Even without a pandemic, it’s hard enough to get patients in the chair for one appointment, let alone two. While their time in the office may be longer than usual, walking out with a final crown in just one appointment is an invaluable service that creates a phenomenal patient experience.

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Get 1-on-1 Training for Better Clinical Outcomes

Get 1-on-1 Training for Better Clinical Outcomes

Get 1-on-1 Training for Better Clinical Outcomes

Visalys CemcoreKettenbach has been breaking new ground in dentistry for the better part of a century, introducing the kinds of materials that have profoundly impacted the profession as a whole.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the company’s innovations, here are a few highlights: They brought dentists the first impression silicone in the 1950s, paving the way for high accuracy and dimensional stability in oral impressions. In the 1980s, the introduction of PANASIL ushered in a whole new class of impression material based on addition-curing silicones. And just this year, they made history again with Visalys CemCore, the 2-in-1 composite that can be used for both cementation and core buildup.

Many of the dentists I work closely with are loyal to Kettenbach for any number of reasons, such as the ability to take one-and-done impressions; or for cementation that can be relied on as the hero of the practice. A lot of them also use its market-leading bite registration material. Aside from the clinical rewards of the products, most of these practice owners also appreciate Kettenbach’s direct-to-market approach, which can save practices significant dollars on operating costs.

Learn How You Can Help Your Practice

If you haven’t had a chance to try some of Kettenbach’s materials, then now is probably a good time to find out what you’ve been missing. The company has introduced a new live or virtual training service to make sure new and current customers are educated on the best use of the products, and to answer any questions dentists may have about its patented technology—including how it can positively impact the practice.

 As seen below, the setup is simple—just check off which products you want to learn about, the kind of meeting you want, and when you can meet, and the Kettenbach team will be in touch.

Kettenbach's Schedule an appointment form

Let’s face it, we all have our own ways of using products and technology, both at home and at work, but how often do we actually make the effort to read all the instructions and watch tutorials so that we can achieve optimal results? When it comes to dentistry, it’s important to read up on products and take webinars to master techniques, but one-on-one training can help you get the best out of your products.

Kettenbach’s product training can be performed online or in person—whichever the dental team prefers. The company encourages you to schedule a virtual or live appointment at your earliest convenience. By reaching out for information and education today, you can reset your tomorrow for a better clinical outcome and improved overhead efficiency.

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OMNICHROMA Slashes Composite Inventory

OMNICHROMA Slashes Composite Inventory


OMNICHROMA Slashes Composite Inventory

Omnichroma best productFor many clinicians, including Dr. Alan Pressman, shade matching used to be a very tedious and time-consuming process—at one point, he kept a total of 38 composite shades stocked in his Spring Valley, NY, practice. But adopting Tokuyama’s OMNICHROMA has slashed his composite inventory significantly, leaving him with just one material to restore all of his patients.

“For most cases, OMNICHROMA works phenomenally and matches very well,” said Dr. Pressman. “After finishing a restoration, you can’t see the difference between natural tooth color and the margin of the filling.”

Indeed, OMNICHROMA has completely transformed shade matching as we know it. At the root of the composite’s color-matching ability is uniformly sized supranano spherical fillers that allow it to match every one of the 16 VITA classical shades with just one shade—a phenomenon that Tokuyama refers to as Smart Chromatic Technology.

“I have been using OMNICHROMA for about 10 months,” shared Lance Huthwaite, DMD, who practices in Gainseville, GA. “I love the way it handles and its ability to match and blend across the board. It really simplifies inventory, too.”

A Solid Choice for Shade Stability

While OMNICHROMA has only been on the market a few short years—although long enough to earn its stripes as a DPS Best Product—clinicians are finding that it not only creates esthetic restorations, but also is strong enough to stand the test of time. In addition to blending seamlessly with any tooth shade from A1 to D4, Smart Chromatic Technology also allows the material to maintain its color match over time.

“OMNICHROMA polishes extremely well, and so far, the restorations are holding their polish and color is remaining stable,” said Dr. Huthwaite.

Before and After curing with OMNICHROMA

Visit to learn more and request a free sample.

In a nationwide survey, we asked the readers of Dental Product Shopper to identify their go-to products in virtually every major category of dentistry. Check out the full list here!

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For Intraoral Sensor Protection, TrollDental Has You Covered

For Intraoral Sensor Protection, TrollDental Has You Covered

Directa Dental

For Intraoral Sensor Protection, TrollDental Has You Covered

TrollBag XLTrollBag 1&2

This year, perhaps more than any other, clinicians don’t want to think twice about the cleanliness of their operatories and equipment—and they don’t want patients to think twice, either. To ensure optimal infection control for everyone who sets foot in the practice, dental teams should stock the office not only with ample personal protective equipment, but sterilization tools and techniques that keep patients both safe and comfortable.

Intraoral sensors, in particular, should be secured with a durable and reliable cover. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Summary of Infection Prevention and Practices in Dental Settings, digital radiography sensors are considered semicritical devices because they are in direct contact with patients’ oral tissues. While sensors should be sterilized after each patient use, it also is recommended that they be protected by an FDA-cleared barrier to reduce contamination during treatment.

A Soft and Strong Solution

While there are many sensor barriers on the market, not all prioritize patient comfort and a secure fit the way TrollDental’s TrollBags do. Unlike stiff sensor bags with sharp seams, TrollBags have a soft texture free of sharp edges to enhance comfort and reduce the stress of dental x-rays for patients. The digital sensor covers are elastic and stretch easily around sensors while creating no extra volume. Latex-free and shaped for easy sensor insertion, TrollBags are gentle on sensors and prolong their durability, while being easy to tear apart without causing cord damage or strain on the cable connection.

TrollBag covers come in sizes #1, #2, and XL in a 500-piece dispenser box. See how these bags are used here:

TrollBag Sensor Covers:

TrollBag XL Sensor Covers:

Visit to order TrollBags and to learn more about TrollDental’s complete line of dental products.

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Enamelast: Everything You Need and Everything Your Patients Want

Enamelast: Everything You Need and Everything Your Patients Want

Enamelast: Everything You Need and Everything Your Patients Want

Most patients are probably not jumping for joy at the idea of having a dental hygienist paint fluoride varnish on their teeth. After all, who wants to endure a gritty, bad-tasting, filmy layer that flakes off for the next several hours? Because they believe that prevention should be a positive experience for patients, Ultradent Products developed a different kind of fluoride varnish, Enamelast, with a natural feel and pleasant taste so patients will leave it on their teeth for maximum fluoride absorption.

Enamelast Fluoride“I use a lot of Ultradent products because they stand behind all their products,” said Dr. Paul Olenyn, a Virginia dentist who recently spoke with DPS about his favorite fluoride varnish, which happens to be Enamelast. A product which earned a respectable ‘recommended product’ rating from DPS evaluators, Enamelast has been the fluoride varnish of choice for Dr. Olenyn and his entire staff for over 2 years because of its smooth texture, pleasant taste, ease of application, and excellent adhesion. Could Enamelast be the fluoride varnish that every clinician needs and every patient wants?

Texture & Taste 

A flavored, xylitol-sweetened, 5% sodium fluoride, Enamelast has expanded from its original Walterberry flavor to include 4 other patient-pleasing flavors - Orange Cream, Cool Mint, Bubble Gum, and Caramel. Every flavor is free of nuts and gluten. “Enamelast is just a great product that is well liked by patients because it has a pleasant taste and doesn’t feel gritty on their teeth,” shared Dr. Olenyn, who said the children in his practice enjoy the bubblegum flavor and the adults prefer the walterberry.

With a smooth, non-gritty texture, Ultradent says patients tend to leave the varnish on their teeth longer, allowing it to deliver the maximum amount of fluoride. “It has a non-gritty invisible appearance and a pleasant taste that makes it a great choice for both children and adults,” Dr. Olenyn described.Enamelast Syringe

Excellent Adhesion

But Enamelast is much more than just great taste. The fluoride varnish adheres well to teeth while providing a high fluoride release and a high fluoride uptake, according to Ultradent’s independent studies. “It has the best adhesion of all the varnishes I have tried,” shared Dr. Olenyn. Because of its patented adhesion formula, the varnish stays on the teeth for a long time and slowly dissolves instead of flaking off, which allows for superior fluoride uptake. Due to Enamelast’s excellent retention, the fluoride has more time to be absorbed by the enamel, promoting enhanced and sustained fluoride release.

Ease of Application

Enamelast is easy to apply to teeth with 2 mix-free delivery options – a 1.2 ml syringe or 0.4 ml unit dose. The syringe includes a SoftEZ tip , while the unit dose is applied with a disposable applicator brush dipped in a single-dose prefilled well. Dr. Olenyn noted, “My hygienists find it easy to apply and highly effective in treating my patients with hypersensitivity.”

Because of its efficiency, effectiveness, and fluoride-releasing capabilities, Dr. Paul Olenyn and the DPS evaluator team recommend that other dental practices give Enamelast a try. It will give you everything you need and give your patients everything they want.


Read the full product evaluation here.