WE TAKE THEM for granted: everyday things that initially astound but quickly come to seem ordinary. Just glance at your wrist—or the wrist of the person across from you. Apple spent years completing thousands of hours of compression tests, more than a thousand prototypes, hundreds of toxicological assessments and even consultations with board-certified dermatologists when it developed the first Apple Watch. Most users barely give that a moment’s thought.
That’s why we are recognizing some of the most extraordinary, visionary or just plain helpful dental tech, equipment and consumables.
#1 NO DRILL. NO FILL. ALL CURE.
CURODONT REPAIR GUIDED ENAMEL REGENERATION
CURODONT REPAIR is the first brush-on treatment for tooth decay that doesn’t require drilling or anesthetic—and it doesn’t stain, or even taste bad. The one caveat: You need to catch lesions relatively early; it’s not for advanced or severe decay. But in appropriate cases, this is a treatment option that benefits more patients (as well as your practice) by healing tooth decay before it progresses into the “irreversible” spectrum (up to D1). Based on a simple peptide, made of naturally occurring amino acids, it diffuses into the depth of early carious lesions and self-assembles into a biomatrix, similar to the natural enamel matrix. The biomatrix then attracts calcium and phosphate ions from saliva to form hydroxyapatite, thus enabling regeneration.
Here’s where it becomes a time saver and revenue builder. Because it’s nonsurgical, hygienists can apply it. The process takes only about a half-hour to learn. Five minutes is all it requires to apply, and it’s almost as easy and quick as using an ordinary fluoride varnish (which you can do as part of the procedure, if you wish). Simply clean, etch, rinse, activate, thoroughly dry, apply and keep isolated for a few minutes. That’s all. Imagine the value patients will see when you ask, “Would you like us to treat that with no drilling?”
Das Tooth: In German-speaking countries alone, Curodont Repair has been used to successfully treat more than 60,000 carious lesions in the last decade.
#2 WHITER, FASTER, SMARTER… FOR REAL
WE’LL ADMIT IT: Some of us do our whitening at home using OTC products. They deliver decent (though hardly great) results, and they’re convenient and cheap. What would it take to change our habits? A product like GLO Science Professional’s GLO PRO POWER+ technology. It delivers dramatic results in just 16 minutes of treatment time. That’s a real advantage worth paying a premium for. GLO PRO POWER+ whitens up to 12 shades in a fraction of the time other in-office whitening treatments take. Plus, it’s reportedly pain-free, even for those who have experienced sensitivity.
Is it any surprise it was developed by a practicing dentist who knows firsthand what it takes for patients to say yes to whitening? Dr. Jonathan B. Levine created and patented Guided Light Optics technology (hence GLO), which employs a warming mouthpiece that boosts efficacy to achieve faster results without pain or sensitivity. And it’s sexy, thanks to Dr. Levine’s business partner and beauty expert, Stacey J. Levine, who shaped the product and patient experience to be especially attractive for upscale beauty brand consumers. GLO even does the marketing for you, just in case GLO PRO POWER+ somehow fails to sell itself; providers can get their practices listed at gloscience.com/dentistfinder.
Whiter Shade of Pale: The patented mouthpiece creates a pleasant, relaxing warming sensation in the mouth, enabling complete freedom of movement while whitening with no pain or sensitivity.
#3 GO BATTERY-FREE. ALWAYS BE READY.
THE DEFINITION of “portability” is evolving. Perhaps you’re old enough to remember Mom or Dad showing up to school plays toting a 15-pound “portable” video camera the size of a house pet? The same goes for X-rays. There were a lot of compromises in the past for those desiring some form of portability, but Carestream has finally dropped a truly compact solution that ditches conventional batteries—and long charge times—for good.
The company’s CS 2400P relies on a supercapacitor, so the system can go from completely discharged to ready for several shots in less than three minutes. With no need to swap out batteries, there’s no variation in the quality of the X-ray’s beam based on battery life cycle, so you can confidently perform intraoral exams. And the CS 2400P’s parameters are similar to those of a conventional generator (70 KV; 3.5 mA) with a shorter dispatch than less-powerful handheld generators, reducing the risk of motion during the exposure and improving sharpness.
Details, Details: The 0.4-mm focal spot potentially provides sharper details than even conventional generators, which typically feature a 0.7-mm focal spot.
#4 EXPRESSIVE EVOLUTION. BY DESIGN.
REVOLUTIONS IN health care cabinetry design are virtually nonexistent. Real advances are based on continual refinement that results in a noticeably better user experience. Midmark is one of those rare companies with the consistent, demonstrated ability to use ongoing research to harmonize space, workflows and technology. The latest result is its new Synthesis series cabinetry for dental settings. It’s derived directly from Midmark’s broader medical line that earned the 2022 Nightingale Award for product design and innovation by Healthcare Design magazine and the Center for Health Design.
Available for operatories, stericenters and general storage needs, Synthesis is 100 percent adaptable to the height of your team. Seems overdue, right, considering that most dental clinicians today are women who are, on average, 5-foot-4? Taller cabinets are available with smooth-deploying, gravity-fed, angled flow shelving that puts even the stuff in the back at your fingertips. It’s also a tactile pleasure, with hinges and casters that glide smoothly. Finally, it looks great, delivering health care–grade features without a cold, clinical aesthetic. That’s a smart evolution.
Shelf Life: A panel of health care interior designers and executives lauded Synthesis cabinetry for its overall design and improvements in ergonomic reach and visibility.
#5 MORE BENEFITS THAN AN ANTIBIOTIC
Touted in other markets as the first non-antibiotic that can halt the advance of infectious conditions common with periodontal disease, HYBENX uses a proprietary chemical desiccation technology designed for dental specialists, general dentists and dental hygienists. It is intended for use in periodontal, endodontic, orthodontic, restorative and routine prophylactic care by dentists and hygienists.
Application is topical via syringe and takes just seconds. It eradicates biofilm in a single application, removes smear layer, inhibits infectious and inflammatory disease processes—and is safe for enamel and does not erode or soften dentinal structure. Unlike some other products, HYBENX also offers a hemostatic and desensitizing effect. The product is FDA-cleared for chronic periodontitis treatment procedures, peri-implantitis, caries and crown restoration procedures, implant maintenance and root canals. HYBENX is available in two clinical viscosities, gel and liquid, to suit the user’s preference.
Perio Power Player: A typical application of HYBENX begins with layering, or irrigating, varying amounts of the product directly into the periodontal pocket. The product is left in place for 10 to 30 seconds, then removed with a water rise.
#6 ACCURACY WITH EASE
3D printing technology has been advancing at a breakneck pace, and SprintRay is unquestionably at the forefront. “Pro 55S” alludes to its 55-micron XY resolution that allows for exceptionally fine margins. Yet it’s also a workhorse: easy to get along with and happy to toil away without much attention thanks to its intuitive user-friendliness, wide material compatibility and industry-leading speed. The “S” designation denotes this is an improved model that builds in an evolutionary but meaningful way on the throughput, accuracy and versatility of its predecessor. Simple to learn and easy to maintain, the Pro 55S is a “self-sufficient fabrication workhorse,” according to SprintRay—a claim we can endorse, having experienced it in action.
Now Even Faster: Whether you're in a high-volume dental lab or a practice of any size, the SprintRay Pro 55S delivers remarkable throughput whether you're focused on seamlessly scaling production or same-day dentistry. Cutting-edge DLP optical technology combined with an advanced resin tank takes the guesswork out of your workflow.
#7 SIMPLICITY WHERE IT MATTERS
WE LIKE products that are, well, easy to like. Kerr’s innovations in endodontics led to the development of the K-File, so the company certainly has the bona fides. Notably, it has also made reducing patient discomfort part of its product performance goals, which is something we all tend to shy away from talking about.
New ZenFlex ONE files are the next step in its efforts to “minimize the tradeoff between flexibility and torsional strength,” according to Kerr’s Yona Zhao. Compatible with both Kerr and other reciprocating motors, ZenFlex ONE demonstrated increased flexibility and resistance to cyclic fatigue compared to other leading files of equivalent size during in-house development. We don’t perform independent clinical testing at Incisal Edge, but when a manufacturer with Kerr’s track record introduces a new product promising an almost nonexistent learning curve, along with better efficiency, patient comfort and tooth structure preservation, we’re all ears.
Ommm...: Kerr claims its new ZenFlex files can shorten shaping time when compared to other leading files on the market.
#8 MORE ROOMS IN THE CLOUD
INCORPORATING IoT into dental practice mechanical rooms is a smart decision, since that’s where all your hardworking utilities face constant wear and tear. Vision Monitor isn’t the first product of its kind to enable remote monitoring and control of equipment, but it has some features worth mentioning, including the new Connect Box, which allows users to connect both legacy and network-enabled equipment to the cloud for more thorough, proactive prevention of downtime. Plus, the Vision Monitor app is nicely done, accommodating unlimited offices with alerts, condition monitoring and access. Air Techniques’ entry into IoT expands the potential for more users to enjoy worry-free monitoring.
Uptime made easy: Vision Monitor and the accessory Connect Box are another attractive option for seekers of IoT benefits, especially if they wish to connect new and legacy mechanicals.
#9 MORE THAN MERELY FLEXIBLE
SEPTODONT PROMOTES its new BioRoot Flow bioceramic root canal sealer primarily on the basis of its adaptability with any endodontic technique. That’s certainly true, but it sells short the product’s notable ease of use (thanks in part to an ideal-feeling viscosity), plus biocompatibility and high radiopacity (5mm). The company’s 90 years of experience makes itself apparent in a product that delivers an evolutionary but significant step forward in delivering predictable results in a wide range of cases. BioRoot Flow is available in premixed 2g syringes with 20 bendable tips.
A Man, a Plan, a Canal: BioRoot Flow's flexible tip and workable viscosity makes it one of the most appealing products of its kind for easy placement.
#10 SURGICAL GUIDE SUCCESS ON DEMAND
ALL software comes with a learning curve, but choosing the right software for you is also a matter of weighing the accompanying benefits. Acteon Imaging Suite (AIS) offers a logical interface and intuitive features, but if implant placement is among your priorities, we especially think this deserves a closer look.
Import your digital impression or scan a model. The 3D App Design module features an extensive cloud-based implant library and allows you to create surgical guides with what Acteon claims is the first fully intuitive guided software of its kind. The upshot is considerable time and cost savings users can realize by fabricating their surgical guides in-house. And reducing costs while making cases more predictable are benefits anyone can appreciate. AIS software is open-architecture and sold with Acteon’s highly capable X-Mind CBCT models, which themselves are worthy of commendation.
Scan, Plan, Prep: ACTEON Imaging Suite (AIS) is powerful 3D design software that helps make implant planning more predictable and potentially, more profitable.
BENCO DENTAL IS THE LEADER in cutting-edge dental practice theory, consulting, systems and design. They drive dentistry forward through their innovative solutions and caring family culture. The company is also the country’s largest independent distributor of technology, equipment and supplies with 1,400 associates across the U.S.