3-D Printer Technology Expands Oral Health Services Department
Technology is amazing! Just ask patients who have taken advantage of a recently purchased 3-D printer for our Oral Health Services department.
The 3-D printer allows the oral health services staff to produce occlusal mouth guards on site at a steeply discounted rate to patients. Whittier patients are now able to purchase custom-made mouth guards for $50 as compared to the typical $300 cost when supplied by an offsite laboratory.
The need for mouth guards is high, since many of our patients suffer from Bruxism (teeth clenching, grinding and subsequent fractures), according to Dr. Nurulla Diyanat, Dental Director at Whittier Street Health Center.
Bruxism can be caused by a number of issues, including anxiety and the stressors of day-to-day living. It can also affect people who are aggressive, have hurried tendencies or experience nervous tension.
“Some of our patients are adversely affected by Bruxism given the tough socioeconomic environment of our neighboring cities,” said Dr. Diyanat.
In an effort to solve teeth clenching and grinding, mouth guards are often given to dental patients, but not all insurance completely covers the cost. That leads to people buying over-the-counter guards which are not as effective and uncomfortable compared to custom-made guards.
But now, with the availability of the onsite 3-D printer, Whittier’s dental patients can get a custom guard for as little as $50.
And that’s not all! Whittier now also has the technology to provide dental crowns in one day – a tremendous benefit to patients who otherwise would have to wait for their crown to come back from an offsite laboratory. It also frees up some time for dental staff so that they can serve other patients.
“The value of having access to 3-D printer technology within our Oral Health Services division is enormous,” said Frederica M. Williams, president and CEO of Whittier Street Health Center, noting that many of Whittier’s patients suffer from Bruxism due to nervous tension, anger, pain, or frustration. “With our ability to produce occlusal guards onsite, we can help prevent Bruxism and teeth fractures for a very modest cost.”
The Whittier Oral Health Services department offers oral care and dental services including preventive and restorative care, oral surgery, periodontal surgery, orthodontics, endodontics, and dental implants.
For more information, contact 617-989-3240 or 617-989-3181.