Leading the way

Employing world-class technology and techniques, New Life Teeth Lab is blazing a trail

14 February, 2022 / professional-focus
 Will Peakin  

On a crisp January morning, the team at New Life Teeth Laboratory is busy on the various stages involved in creating high-quality dental restorations. In their new, spacious, natural light-filled lab on the outskirts of Edinburgh, technicians are working on a range of implants – from single units up to full arch restorations.

They are leading the way in the transformation of dental technicians from ‘mechanics’ to IT engineers. In the past year alone, they have reduced their plaster models by 80 per cent and have a goal of being plaster free in the lab and impression free in the clinic within three years. Environmental impact is very important to the team; they are using a cycle courier whenever possible and electric car when not. They also use biodegradable bags for lab work.

New Life Teeth Lab is the partner laboratory of the New Life Teeth clinic, the leaders in full-arch dental implants and cosmetic dentistry in Scotland. But it is also a showcase for other dental clinics looking for a fully supported laboratory partnership.

We strive for the perfect blend of technical expertise, personal service and dependable results

“The aim is to provide only the highest quality dental restorations — in a timely fashion with attentive customer service,” said Rob Leggett, Head Clinical Dental Technician. “We take pride in using only the best restorative systems and consistently invest in the latest technologies and materials to achieve the best results. We strive for the perfect blend of technical expertise, personal service and dependable results; all underpinned by a strong belief in relationships based on communication and feedback.”

One of the lab’s recent collaborations is with Southern Implants and their newly launched SIREAL system. SIREAL is by virtual prosthesis and on-screen design of surgical guides, allowing prosthetically driven implant placements to increase the predictability and accuracy of implant placements which in turn makes constructing the appliance more predictable.

The team, with a combined experience of 100 years, calls on an extensive library of implant systems available via the Zirkonzahn CAD/CAM and milling system.

For crown and bridge, Prettau Zirconia is the material of choice for frequently occurring problems like reduced available space, bruxism or ceramic chipping. This highly biocompatible and non-porous material distinguishes itself through its high-translucency and natural appearance. Used with a special colouring technique, veneer ceramics can be eliminated. The Prettau Bridge is regarded as the best material for Full Arch cases and New Life Teeth Lab now have over 500 full arch cases under their belt.

Digital solutions include Digital Smile Design, bringing patients into the smile design process, and Face Hunter, which brings the patient’s physiognomy into this workflow, allowing the dental technician to obtain a result that is much more precise, offering the dentist and patient a near-photorealistic preview of the definitive restoration.

Rob is a Clinical Dental Technician and an early implementer of Digital Dentures. He is always looking for ways to improve the service he provides to his patients, clinically and technically. “Digital Dentures is without doubt one of the biggest things to happen in restorative dentistry in decades – it is great to be at the forefront.

“We can do full and partial dentures completely digitally, either by taking intraoral scans clinically or designing and milling dentures in the lab. The process is a lot more predictable, and we no longer need to be concerned with issues such as shrinkage in materials. It also reduces our exposure to dust and chemicals, like monomer, which makes life in the lab more pleasant.”

Clinically, Rob accepts referrals from GDPs for all denture related patients.

The Lab also provides a service to Orthodontic clinics, Dental Technician Jade explains. “We used to receive alginate impressions for Essex retainers but now that is all done digitally. We receive a file from the dentist and 3D print and return the aligners the next day. We also provide a service for tooth alignment corrections, where the Orthodontist needs to alter the treatment plan and make additional aligners, this can all be done via our software.”

They also offer a scanning service for orthodontic study models allowing orthodontists to access STL files for treatment planning. Or to print and create models.

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