By Dental Tribune International.

Ivoclar Vivadent hosts successful Competence in Esthetics symposium

VIENNA, Austria: Digitalisation has changed the dental industry and new technologies have entered dental practices and laboratories faster than predicted. Following the dynamics of this development, dental manufacturer Ivoclar Vivadent highlighted this topic at its Competence in Esthetics symposium recently held in the Austrian capital of Vienna.

For the third time, Gernot Schuller, Senior Director for Austria and Eastern Europe at Ivoclar Vivadent, and his team succeed in drawing participants from all over the world to the symposium. More than 1,400 participants from 36 countries registered for the event, which is traditionally hosted at the Austria Center Vienna conference venue. An additional 100 people joined as day visitors to attend the presentations of the 21 speakers.

Megatrend digitalisation
In his opening speech, Ivoclar Vivadent CEO Robert Ganley explained why it is important for the company to focus on digitalisation, a megatrend that has been predicted by reputable futurologists and not only for dentistry. Many speakers at the symposium were pioneers in terms of digitalisation and have used several generations of devices and technologies and shared their experiences via numerous clinical cases that they treated using either a fully or mixed digital approach.

What changed with the advent of CAD/CAM? What are the strengths and weaknesses of this technology? At the event, there was a general consensus that CAD/CAM is an intelligent tool rather than a solution in itself. That CAD/CAM facilitates day-to-day work and makes it easier for dentists and dental technicians to overcome the barriers of time and space was proven by a number of presenters who work as a team across different countries, among them Dr Stefan Koubi from France and dental technician Hilal Kuday from Turkey, as well as Dr Florin Cofar from Romania and dental technician Lorant Stumpf from Ireland.

Preview in a virtual mirror
At the symposium, new state-of-the-art software was introduced that in the future will allow users to see different versions of their restoration in a virtual mirror and modify it with a swiping motion, like on a smartphone. A demo version of the program is already available and was shown at the event.

At present, treatment teams may use mock-ups that are milled or printed to give their patients a clearer sense of what their prospective smiles may look like. Dr Irena Sailer and dental technician Vincent Fehmer presented a case in which they offered their patient three different mock-ups to try-in: a perfect aesthetic version, a version with a diastema and another one in which teeth #12 and 22 were rotated around their axes. These digitally prepared mock-ups facilitated the conversation with the patient and made it possible for her to choose her own prospective smile. The mock-up of her choice was then finalised using digital technology. “This is as easy as copy and paste,” said Fehmer.

Digital library as a magic toolbox
Dental technicians can expand their digital library with every clinical case by storing scan data. Over time, this results in an extensive collection of tooth shapes that can be used in the planning of other cases. The Cofar–Stumpf team knows how to use the library to their advantage. Both team members have studied the dentition of many patients and have turned the basics of aesthetics upside down when it comes to shape and symmetry: their result proves that the shape of the face does not always conform to the shape of the tooth and some asymmetry may be present—especially in the case of smiles that appear natural or beautiful. “It’s all about harmony and individuality and not about perfection in form and symmetry,” explained Cofar. When the team members use their library of nature in the digital planning process, they blend the anterior and posterior teeth of different cases. In the process, the teeth are scaled in size but never distorted, because that would affect the optical result adversely.

Treating sensitive patients and children with care
Dr Ronaldo Hirata’s presentation on composites in the daily practice received show-stopping applause. The Brazilian, who has made New York his adopted home, treats patients according to minimally invasive criteria. “We overtreat patients. Let’s ask ourselves: what would we do if the person sitting in the dental chair was our daughter?” he said. Hirata is the inventor of the Lego system: a method by which the composite filling can be created on a silicone model (including a Lego block) outside of the mouth. This approach is suitable when treating sensitive patients and children.

Hirata’s knowledge is based on his extensive studies of composite restorations and possible sources of error. In his opinion, inaccurate perception of time in the practice is often to be blamed for the postoperative problems of patients; if the etching time is too long, for example, marginal gaps may form and result in sensitivity to cold.

New app enabling participant interaction
Especially for Ivoclar Vivadent events and lectures, the company developed the IV Events app. During the Competence in Esthetics 2017 symposium, the app provided information about the presentations and speakers, and allowed users to rate them using the star system used on social media. The app also gave participants the opportunity to pose questions to the presenters, and questions of broad interest were discussed on stage. The discussions were moderated by Drs Thomas Bernhart (scientific chairman of this year’s event) and Laurent Schenck (Senior Director of Global Communications and Strategy at Ivoclar Vivadent).