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The ROI of 3D Printing in Dentistry

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The technology of 3D printing, particularly its ROI, was recently highlighted in the November issue of Dental Product Shopper. The sidebar article was entitled “3D Printing: The Next Big Thing?” I took note of the question mark. 3D printing remains in its infancy in the dental practice, but it’s already considered much more precise than milling in terms of duplicating virtual design dictates. And there’s an important distinction about this dental technology compared to some others—cost of entry is low.

That’s one of Dr. Sully Sullivan’s favorite aspects of 3D printing technology. Dr. Sullivan currently uses his 3D printer to fabricate working models for crowns and veneers, study models, and surgical guides. There’s been no comparison in cost, he says: $5 to $10 for a guide he prints in office with an hour wait time vs. up to $350 from the lab, printed on their schedule. He’s also used his 3D printer for orthodontic aligners. His other favorite attributes are the quietness of the printing and its accuracy.

So which model of 3D printer should you consider? While there are currently a few manufacturers in the space, you might want to take a closer look at the MoonRay from SprintRay. There are a couple of reasons why.

First, SprintRay specializes in 3D printers, software, and materials designed for digital dentistry. This is a tech startup that’s all-in on the technology. All of SprintRay’s education on their website is centered around 3D printing.

Second, if you’re new to 3D printing, SprintRay provides an all-inclusive package with everything you need to get started. For $3,999, you get the MoonRay 3D printer, a resin tank, spare resin drum, build platform, 1 liter of model resin, finishing kit, power supply and Ethernet cable. It also comes with a 1-year limited warranty, which provides extra peace of mind for a new technology.

Dr. Sullivan believes that when it comes to crowns, bridges, veneers, and other indirect restorations, we are still probably 5 to 10 years away from using 3D printing to create final restorations. The technology will continue to evolve alongside the materials. For now, the opportunity to create low-cost, effective surgical guides is here for those who are willing.The question is: are you ready for the future of dentistry?

SprintRay encourages dentists to order a free dental sample to see the quality of the 3D-printed part for themselves. Or, if you don’t want to wait and you’re attending the Greater New York Dental meeting, stop by SprintRay’s booth #900, to see the printing in action.

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