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- August 2013
To celebrate the work of highly skilled denture technicians and elevate the status of the specialty, Candulor is sponsoring its second North American "Art of Denture" Competition, inviting U.S. and Canadian technicians to fabricate fully removable upper and lower dentures supported by locators.
The finished cases will be judged by a jury of professionals—including a university professor, master dental technician, an implant specialist and a Candulor specialist—and the competition culminates with an awards presentation at the 2014 LMT LAB DAY in Chicago, February 21-22, where all finished...
- May 2013
"This trip will hold a special place in my heart as one of those chance-of-a-lifetime experiences," says Liz Lake, CDT, a staff member at Midwestern University (MWU) College of Dental Medicine, Glendale, AZ, who recently returned from a dental mission on the South Pacific island of Tonga.
The Kingdom of Tonga is made up of more than 100...
- September 2012
Since launching AvaDent Digital Dentures last fall, Global Dental Science has milled close to 2,000 arches. The dentures are currently being marketed directly to dentists; a laboratory partnership model is in the works.
"With AvaDent Digital Dentures, we are changing the entire fabrication process for removable prosthetics. This digital...
Forty-five percent of respondents to LMT's exclusive 2012 Removable Survey rate the market as good and 35% classify it as fair. The majority say their removable business in the first half of 2012 is level or just slightly up or down compared to all of 2011.
At one end of the spectrum is the 9% of survey participants who say the market is...
- August 2012
Sponsored by the California Dental Association Foundation, CDA Cares is a series of dental clinics that provides the state's underserved population with free care. The most recent event, held in May in Modesto, provided $1.2 million worth of cleanings, fillings, extractions and even dentures and partials to over 1,600 people in just two days.
For Kris Feichtmeir, a first-time technician-volunteer, the experience was both exhilarating and overwhelming. "We didn't really know what we were getting into," says Feichtmeir, Owner of QRP Dental Lab in Modesto. "We set up and thought we were OK, but...
- June 2012
Small laboratories—those with one to three people—are the backbone of our industry, representing more than 50% of the U.S. market. LMT's Small Lab Survey offers an overview of who they are, how they work and their outlook for the future of their own businesses as well as their market segment as a whole.
For years, we've been hearing about the decline in the number of small labs and yet, to date, LMT's circulation data shows little attrition; the percentage of one- to three-person laboratories has remained relatively consistent during our 28-year history. However, more than 60%...
Read More 5 minute read
- May 2012
Eleven years after purchasing and successfully operating Choate Ceramic Laboratory in Conroe, TX, the Co-Owners Jimmy Durham, David Fitch, CDT, and Alton Trotter, CDT, moved out of their ceramic comfort zone and added a removable department in January 2010.
They knew the demand for removable prosthetics was growing and saw going full service as a way to keep the 19-person laboratory as profitable as possible. Also, as a result of the economy, new technology, a dramatic increase in precious alloy prices and overseas competition, they projected their C&B workload would decrease and that...
- April 2012
"For the next 20 years, 10,000 people will reach the age of 65 on a daily basis," said Max Sturm, President of Candulor, during a press conference at LAB DAY. "In addition, 12% of all dentures are now implant supported and we expect to see 6.5% growth in this area next year."
To meet this increasing demand and help laboratories fabricate...
Calling it the "Oscars for denture technicians," Candulor announced the winners of its first-ever North American Kunstzahnwerk (Art of Denture) Competition at LAB DAY. The technician-participants displayed their proficiency in removables by fabricating a fully removable upper and lower bar-retained overdenture.
Taking first prize and winning...
To meet the needs of implant, geriatric and TMJ patients, Heraeus Kulzer launched its Mondial 8i-5° posterior tooth line. "New indication areas such as implant prosthetics are placing increased demands on the stability, function and esthetics of denture teeth," said Lesley Melvin, Heraeus Laboratory Product Manager. "That's why we've worked...
- March 2012
As Managing Director of the removable department at Town & Country Dental Studios in Freeport, NY, Josef Kolbeck has implemented a unique method of processing a fixed removable denture with the pouring technique that saves time and materials and increases accuracy. It eliminates duplication of a secondary plaster model and, instead, uses a silicone working model that allows easy handling and adjusting during processing, and provides a more exact fit and placement of the screws into the access holes.
After treatment planning and implant placement, the dentist sends an open-tray impression...
Hello future. You're Justin Time! Just in Time to continue delivering smiles to the world. Just in Time to help fill the void when many of us retire. What would we ever have done without you?
To recap: Justin came to America from France.* In the mid-1980s "he" announced, at the annual meeting of the Dental Laboratory Association of New York,...
- January 2012
Valplast enters the CAD/CAM market. 3M ESPE delves into a new material category. Three more manufacturers enter the milling center arena. These are just a few of the highlights from the DLOAC's CAD/CAM Technology Symposium & Expo in November in Pasadena, CA.
While digital technology has been a boon to the C&B market in the past decade, its application to removable labs has been much more limited. One of the latest developments* in the removable arena is Valplast International Corp.'s Precise-Fit™, a system for producing a digitally designed trial baseplate...
Read More 6 minute read
- April 2011
The specialty once considered to be the least glamorous is thriving. According to initial results of LMT's 2008 Fee Survey, 58% of our denture lab respondents report an increase in profitability in the past two years, largely due to increased sales, greater productivity and higher fees. For instance, the average fee for a complete maxillary denture charged by removable labs has jumped 25% in just two years, up from $259 to $323. Click here to view the chart
Driving this growth is an aging population of educated dental consumers who are seeking more stable, comfortable dentures. For instance,...
I'm no longer the lowest on the totem pole! A new class of freshman has started school and I'm now a sophomore. As I transitioned to my second year, I felt like a battle-weary soldier watching replacements fresh out of boot camp joining the fray--but wearing new scrubs instead of camouflage.
Looking back at my first year of dental school, I see that my lab background helped me greatly. Dentistry was a second language for me; I was rarely lost in my classes. On the other hand, I knew almost nothing about operative materials and preparation techniques. With more knowledge about the...
Read More 4 minute read
It's predicted that the number of adults needing one or two complete dentures will continue to rise, increasing to 37.9 million adults in 2020, and demand is also growing thanks to an aging population of educated dental consumers who seek a more esthetic, natural-looking restoration.
Removable technicians are also a hot commodity: early in their careers, many technicians opted for the glamour of C&B and, today, the limited number of skilled denture technicians are beginning to retire, creating a profitable opportunity for those offering removable work. In addition, with the exception of...
In Part III of his ongoing column, Eric Nunnally, CDT, finds that technicians and dentists have more parallels than he thought, and that his technician background is finally giving him a leg up.
We dental lab people love to worry. Offshore competition, lab school closures, increased FDA involvement, lack of workforce, denturists and the cost of CAD/CAM systems keep many of us up at night, sweating.
Rest assured that dentists also have their fair share of threats and worries. Labs and dental practices have a lot more in common than I realized--both are minimally regulated businesses...
Industry analysts have long predicted that developments in fixed prosthetics and better overall dental care would spell the demise of the removables market. But if you're worried about the future of this specialty, don't be.
Thanks to a growing demand from an aging population, an increasing consumer awareness of esthetic dentistry, and product and technological developments, the market is thriving. "It's a wonderful time to be in the removables market and there are many reasons to be optimistic about the future," says Tom Zaleske, owner of Matrix Dental Lab in Bensenville, Illinois and a technical...
Read More 6 minute read
Q: When casting a full palate with 3/10" thick stippled pattern, is it possible for the investment to expand and stop the alloy from fully casting?
A: In theory, if the mold were heated to an extremely high temperature, the expansion could cause the top of the mold cavity to touch the bottom. However, if the investment were to survive, the casting would be useless because over-expansion would make the fit unacceptable.
If you're having trouble casting a full base, the real problem is probably the spruing technique. The most common mistake technicians make when casting full bases is trimming the...
Read More 28 minute read
Q: Why do most dentists use plastic teeth instead of porcelain teeth for dentures and at the same time prefer porcelain over acrylic for C&B? The only reason I can think of is that they do not know how to take a proper vertical registration. The esthetics of plastic teeth are as good as porcelain teeth, especially over time. Also, the rate of plastic tooth breakage is equal to that of porcelain. What is your opinion?
A: Your perceptions are absolutely correct. A few decades ago, porcelain denture teeth were practically the only prosthetic teeth used. In the early 1960's, great improvements...
Read More 41 minute read
Denturism is now legal in six states: Arizona, Idaho, Maine, Montana, Oregon and Washington--and denturists say more legislation is right around the corner. Read on to learn how they did it and if your state may be next.
Since it was first legalized in the United States in 1977, denturism has evolved from an unregulated movement of technicians--whom many considered to be renegades--into a more widely accepted, reputable profession. In their quest to expand patient access to affordable, quality dentures by servicing the public directly, denturists have fought long, hard battles at the grass-roots...
Read More 7 minute read
CAD/CAM in the Lab: Up 40% in Five Years)
Types of Restorations Sent Offshore
The Global Marketplace: Offshore Outsourcing
Average Number of Clients by Lab Size
Top Sources of Continuing Education
Breakdown of the Average Client Base
Laboratory Service Across the Board
C&B Caseloads: Metal-Based vs. Metal-Free
How's Business in 2009 Compared to 2008?
Continuing Education: Attending Courses with Dentist-Clients
CLOSE UP: Restorative Options
Average Breakdown of Metal-Free Caseloads/Average Breakdown of Metal-Based Caseloads
A 30 Year Look at Lab Marketing Strategies
Read More 11 minute read
In Part II of his ongoing column, technician-turned-dental student, Eric Nunnally, CDT, chronicles his experience at the University of Louisville School of Dentistry.
People kept telling me that dental school would fly by. Liars.
It has been a great experience so far, but by no means is it going quickly. People also told me that getting accepted to dental school was the hardest part of dental school. Liars.
The coursework is difficult and, at this point, I feel more like a physician than a dentist. I could diagnose a systolic heart murmur more quickly than a cavity and I know more about...
- December 2008
Pacific region, complete dentures
Fees are up 8% nationwide over the last two years, according to a comparison of LMT's 2008 and 2006 Fee Surveys. Prices have increased across the board for all specialties and 70% of respondents say profitability has improved or remained stable over the last two years. An analysis of the data...