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"IF I WON'T put the restoration in my mouth, I won't deliver it to my client or the patient." This is Maged Mohareb's guiding principle, and the one he applies to his quality control responsibilities every day at Glidewell Dental Laboratories in Newport Beach, CA and imparts to the many technicians he teaches in the implant department.
Teaching is his passion and he especially loves mentoring technicians who are just starting out in their careers. "To see trainees grow and progress from entry level to more challenging cases is so rewarding. Even when they're frustrated or think they can't do it, I try to inspire them and tell them if you can be successful in implants, you can do anything," says Mohareb.
A jack of all trades, Mohareb is experienced in ceramics, C&B, implants and removable prosthetics. He graduated from dental technology school in Egypt in 1993 and immigrated to the U.S. about 10 years ago. He misses his family members, who are still in Egypt, and when he came to the...
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, his intention to debut what he hoped would be the industry's first CAD/CAM system. His visit created a stir: it was a vision of what our future might look like. After traveling around our country for a number of years, looking for a permanent home, Justin went back to the drawing board in Europe. In 1997, Procera, from Sweden-based Nobel Biocare, became the first usable Just-in-Time system in the U.S., just a couple of years before other "Just-in-Time technologies" arrived.
"Justin," of course, is a personification of all "automated milling and printing technologies." So again I ask: where would we be heading now if Justin hadn't arrived in Time?...
Are you confident that every case that goes out the door is representative of your technical standards? Owners share strategies to assure that all restorations leaving their labs are their best work.
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Change is a natural process and one of the few constants in life, but itâs also something many people resist. Failure to successfully implement change can be devastating to a laboratory: technicians become preoccupied, productivity drops, gossip and
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Awhile back we had an online debate, via LMTmag.com, about what’s good, better, best when it comes to man-made or machine-engineered restorations. By now, it seems the answer is clear: both. In the same way “art versus science” was the community debate of the 1980s and 90s, I think most technicians would agree that, ideally, it’s a blend.
At LAB DAY this year—as well as at the IDS in Cologne—exactly what became clear is that we mortals have been forced to recognize that machines are, and forever forward will be, our creative partners for many things, including the creation of prosthetics. There was an acceptance and understanding among attendees that being a player means incorporating advanced technologies into the laboratory environment.
Though there were a number of product introductions—among them, lab and intraoral scanners, 3D printers and milling units, digital fabrication materials and digital solutions for removable prostheses—stronger,...
Tommy Zhu had laid out a detailed plan for becoming a dentist. First, to gain a background in the profession, he enrolled in the Restorative Dentistry program at the New York City College of Technology. After graduation in 2003, the next step was to work as a denture technician to save money for dental school tuition.
That's when the plan fell apart, but only because he loved being a technician and forgot all about dental school. During Zhu's nine years in the field, he has worked in nearly all phases of denture and C&B fabrication; he finds his role as a ceramist to be the most gratifying. "Creating the shape, shade and function of a tooth also makes the ceramist an artist, architect and engineer. We make a great impact on a person's life," he says.
One experience—as a technician in an in-house laboratory—shaped Zhu's philosophy as a ceramist and even compelled him to create his own layering and staining technique. "That patient contact changed the way I looked at my...
Marisa Birnbaum doesn't back down from a challenge. In 2007, she and her brother David—who both learned about CAD technology at the Bronx High School of Science—opened a mobile laboratory operation with little laboratory or business experience, using the CEREC inlab system to make same-day crowns. Marisa did all the technical work while David handled sales and marketing.
In 2010, when the economy took its toll, she and David decided to switch gears and scrap the mobile concept. "The original business didn't pan out, but I knew the industry was still a great place to be," says Marisa. "I love the artistic part of the work, the blend of old and new technologies and the fact that a big part of the job is problem solving." The pair decided to try the traditional laboratory business model and began looking for a permanent space where they could expand their services.
When they connected with Max Klein, Owner of five-person Accutec of New York, who was renting space in his lab,...
Laboratory owners are using a variety of innovative strategiesâfrom digital business cards to dentists on staffâto effectively market their laboratoryâs services and technical know-how.
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LMT attends the DLOAC CAD/CAM Expo and Symposium to bring you
the latest developments in digital dentistry. The theme? Automation continues to streamline, simplify and improve...
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The subcontracting market is strong, thanks to the ever-growing demand for digitally fabricated restorations and steady demand for cast partial frameworks.
When you're a ceramist at a lab known as the "Lab to the Stars" in Beverly Hills, CA, you know you're going to have some exacting clients. But Martin Martinez's painstaking attention to detail and artistic talents—he's also a painter and illustrator—make him the man for the job.
"Our clients are often working on very high-profile smiles, so they're very particular about everything from contacts to texture to color," says Martinez, who has been at the lab for 11 years. "We have dentists who choose five different colors to use on one crown or send CDs full of photos and detailed notes. A few clients even request that I email photos of each fabrication step so they can monitor the process. Sometimes the requests can double the time it takes to fabricate a case."
Add to that the common request for rush cases, patients regularly coming in for custom shades, and the occasional call to go to the dental office to adjust a shade on the spot, and you can imagine what his day is like....
A new fleet of delivery cars has turned into a double bonus for Maverick Dental Lab, Export, Pennsylvania: it's saving on delivery costs and reaping the benefits of a unique and effective direct-to-consumer marketing strategy.
Many laboratories create esthetic restorations, but some owners and their teams are lucky enough to work in facilities that are as beautiful as the work they create.
MaxSteam showcased its new MS MAXFLEXINJECTION system. Made in Italy, the system offers digital control, automatic injection, and fast and easy processing. You select the time (up to 60 minutes) and temperature (up to 400oC) appropriate for the material and then insert the flask. You can use any quality biocompatible colored or transparent material, including nylon, to fabricate flexible dentures, bite guards and mouthguards. The unit weighs 22kg, measures 20x32x45cm and has a maximum pressure of six bars. For more information, call +39 0522371903, email email@example.com or visit www.maxsteam.it.
Working at her parents' lab was the last thing Megan Gardner thought she'd be doing when she graduated with a graphic design degree. But when the company she worked for went under and she needed a job, her parents had an opening in the model room. It was when she moved into waxing, though, that she had her "aha" moment.
"Waxing up copings and full cast crowns was very reminiscent of my sculpture and pottery courses, so not only was I applying skills I learned in school, but I was using my hands to create something that helped people. It was a rewarding feeling," says Gardner, who then opted to attend a one-year dental technology program at a local technical college.
Gardner's education in graphic design has practically made learning the lab's new Nobel Procera system second nature. She was already accustomed to digitally manipulating shapes and many of the software tools are similar to design software she worked with in school. What Gardner finds the most exciting though is what she...
Rick Wides, owner of Bethesda Dental Laboratory in Gaithersburg, Maryland, was growing tired of the struggles of entrepreneurship.
In the past two years, three private equity firms have invested in dental laboratories and group laboratories have made a considerable number of acquisitions, with some of them being the largest purchases in our industry's history. How are these move
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In just four years, Michaelangelo Dental Studio, Tujunga, CA, has grown from a staff of two to 10 and sales have increased 425%. Find out how.
DTI has 20 laboratories around the U.S., with the flagship laboratory—and centralized milling center for all its labs—located in Dublin, CA. During the past two years, the Dublin facility has transitioned to 80% digital, downsized and increased the productivity of the remaining technicians by 89%.
And now, DTI has taken its commitment to digital dentistry one step further: Under the direction of DTI Chief Technology Officer Lee Culp, MicroDental North Carolina opened in March with the goal of being a completely digital laboratory. In addition to establishing a DTI presence in the southeast, the new 5,000-sq-ft facility will entirely rely on the efficiency of technology and Culp aims to have each technician designing or finishing, staining and glazing 50 or more full contour units per day.
"In Dublin, we've seen the efficiency levels that can be gained by switching to digital technology," says Culp. "MicroDental North Carolina is our testing ground to see if we can create...
There are technicians attracted to the artistic side of dental technology, and then there's Mike Wandling. "I love the math, science and biology that's involved," he says. "This field has a little bit of all of those things and I enjoy using them to enhance a person's look and function."
Since joining Keller Laboratories as a metal finisher 11 years ago, Wandling has steadily worked his way up the ladder, handling a variety of positions including investing/casting, waxing, fixed quality control, and training and development; today he serves as Fixed Production Manager overseeing a department of over 60 technicians.
Driving this ambitious technician is his desire to be the best he can be and to serve as a good example for the rest of the Keller staff. For instance, when the lab was planning to host its first CDT exam a few years ago, Wandling—then the Director of Training and Education for the fixed department—encouraged his technicians to become certified. He wasn't yet certified...
Laboratory Owner Michael Suris has recently started using Strategy Milling©’s services to mill full contour gold crowns and bridges for Dental Professional Labs, Inc. in Merrillville, IN. He offers a step-by-step look at fabricating a milled gold posterior crown.