Millions of American kids and adults have orthodontic treatment every year, and even though their treatment plans will vary, they all have one thing in common: They had impressions made before their treatment began.
Impressions play an important role in orthodontic treatment — but until recently, having impressions made meant biting into ooey, gooey putty (and frequently gagging).
Brendan Smith, DDS, MS, and our team at Freedom Orthodontics have done away with putty impressions, replacing them with state-of-the-art digital impressions that offer plenty of important advantages for our patients in Cedar Park, Texas.
Whether you have traditional braces or clear aligners, the goal of treatment is the same: to give you straighter teeth and a properly aligned bite. During treatment, orthodontic appliances move your teeth into the right positions — and that’s where impressions come in.
An impression is a mold of your teeth. It serves as a three-dimensional model that lets your treatment provider visualize your teeth and your bite from all angles.
Using your impressions, Dr. Smith creates a treatment plan aimed at achieving optimal alignment and bite correction based on your unique oral anatomy. For optimal fit and function, those same impressions are also used at the lab where your aligners or other orthodontic appliances are created.
Digital impressions offer several important advantages over traditional putty impressions. The first benefit is the one that’s probably most noticeable to patients: Digital impressions are simply more comfortable.
With digital impressions, you don’t have to bite down on uncomfortable trays filled with sticky putty. Instead, Dr. Smith uses a slim, wand-shaped digital camera to capture highly detailed images of your teeth from multiple angles in just a few minutes. Computer software knits together the digital impressions to form a 3D image of your entire mouth.
These digital impressions provide a lot more detail than a putty mold, and they also allow Dr. Smith to direct your entire treatment plan from start to finish, modeling how your teeth will need to move to come into alignment.
The impressions can be easily stored on a computer and shared with your dentist if needed. Finally, because digital impressions don’t use putty or disposable trays, they’re better for the environment as well.
At Freedom Orthodontics, Dr. Smith and our team help every patient enjoy all the benefits of orthodontic treatment — including more beautiful smiles and better oral health. To learn more about digital impressions and the other state-of-the-art technology we use, call our office or book an appointment online today.