Showing posts from 2017

Speaking of Santa...

I hope everyone is recovering from the Holiday bustle!
We're back at it here at Drake!

I had a realization on Christmas Eve as I was sneaking around, playing Santa, and trying not to wake up my two little boys:I AM SUCH A FRAUD.

What do I do once this jig is up? What am I going to tell them about the Tooth Fairy? And the Easter Bunny? 

I'm eating the cookies, writing the Elf's good-bye letter, drinking the milk, sneaking the presents from my closet...
Don't get me wrong, now. It's SO much fun, and so worth it...but seriously, WHO STARTED ALL THIS MESS that we have to clean up? Is there an article on how to gently let these folks go from their lives?

Below is a link to a neat article I found when trying to find someone to blame for having to keep cash in my purse for the next few years!  (I recently had to sneak a dollar from the 4 year old's piggy bank when the 8 year old unexpectedly lost a tooth.)  I found a lot of fun facts from different regions - even thegoing r…

WHO KNEW - by Grethe Whitman

Who Knew?




Image's good for our taste buds, at least.
Here's a fun little read we came across from the ADA in the spirit of Thanksgiving! It tells us all about our favorite T-Day foods, and the good and bad that come with them.


“I sent a reline to the lab and the bite is now open half an inch in the anterior, what happened?”
By  Larry R. Holt, DDS, FICD
Things can easily be messed up during a reline process.  But, if you take a little extra time and follow a protocol, you can easily get nice results too.
First, is the denture worth relining?  Really old dentures are typically worn and the acrylic is not amenable to accepting new acrylic.  
Its ok to tell a patient that their denture is ready for the scrap heap!
First (a second time) its very difficult to make major corrections on tooth position by performing a reline.  It happens accidentally on occasion, but when attempting to do something like intentional lengthening for more tooth reveal, its very difficult to be predictable.  This is a procedure to refit the intaglio surface, not to realign the teeth.
Remember, all relines are closed bite impressions.  If you take the reline impression open mouth, it is almost impossible to maintain proper occlusion.  Eve…



Before working in the dental lab, I had never given much thought to a palatal obturator.  Before working with Dr. Amit Paryag, I had never seen a restorative dentist with such fire and keenness toward patient and product perfection - "patient centered care", as he refers to it.  When the two rolled in to one for us at Drake, something momentous was born. 

DID YOU KNOW? In 1560 Lusitanus was probably the first to describe what is today known as palatal obturator used for permanent luetic fistula of the palate (). In 1564 Ambroise Parè called his small obturators “couvercles”, and in 1575 changed the name to “obturateur" which is derived from the Latin “obturo” meaning to stop upIn 1634, Johson translated Parè’s “surgery”, published for king Henri the third. The text described an appliance to restore the palatal defect caused by venereal diseases and gunshot wounds. In order to create his obturators, Parè filled the cavities with a gold or silver plate a lit…


Patients With Terminal Dentitions  .........................How to Avoid Extracting Teeth Before Immediate Denture Fabrication

So, you have a patient in the chair whose teeth move around like a piano player.  Its always a miracle some of the teeth don’t fall out when they sneeze.  Your plan is to take an alginate impression to send to the lab for fabrication of immediate denture.  Only problem is, there is no assurance that some of the teeth wont come out in the impression.  First and foremost, it is not your fault that the patient has waited to seek treatment.  Be sure you explain that you will make every effort not to perform unintended oral surgery.  That said, sometimes even with best efforts, these teeth will come out during the impression.  Please follow on to see how I have been dealing with these cases.
You will need: A good stock tray. (I like the COE Spacer trays) PVS adhesive Alginate Adhesive Fast Set, Heavy Body PVS impression material Fast Set Bite Registration material Alginate


Wet milling in all it's glory!


To go with our video clip, here is a neat little article from IDT  about milling machines.  It explains a few basic workings and some comparative details - including wet versus dry.

At Drake, we do both - different options for different configurations, different materials, and different outcomes. 

If you want to know more, give us a call!
You can never be armed with too much knowledge.


I know this post isn't DENTAL, sorry!

But I got this as an email forward (which I usually delete immediately) & it was too cool not to share!

Also, as a detail oriented person, I was shocked that I've seen ALL of these logos before and have never picked up on any of their intended details - except for the last one. So again, I had to share.
I was 1 for 8.  
How do you fare?


Part 3: Precision Denture Processing

Remember those dental material science classes?  In my day, Duane Taylor described polymerization shrinkage - its that pesky process by which our materials shrink dimensionally during their setting reactions.  This shrinkage impacts daily restorative procedures such as composite placement.  We have all developed techniques to allow for this by using some sort of layering techniques when filling teeth.
Polymerization shrinkage is particularly vexing during denture processing.  As dentures are processed, this shrinkage typically “draws” the intaglio away from the palate and additionally can pull teeth lingually.  This directly affects tissue adaptation and denture occlusion
 The amount of distortion varies depending on many factors: -  brand and quality of denture acrylic -
-  proper mixing of acrylic per manufacturer’s instructions -
- proper work flow including processing flasks, boil out tanks, etc -
- skill and experience of technician -

In a worst cas…


After giving a lab tour to a couple of dental students the other day, I caught myself drifting off on the familiar topic of  MAN vs MACHINE...
When you see all the shiny moving parts of the scanners, millers and printers, you can't help but to ask the same question as most - "how many people's jobs have these replaced?"

And let me tell you how satisfying it is to say NONEevery time!  If you read one of our previous blogs on digital, we touched on this topic a bit - that technology isn't magic and still needs brainpower to operate it. And that we take pride in not getting rid of old techniques and skills, but up-cycling them into other areas where they can be honed and refined. The same goes for technicians - hand waxers can become CAD/CAM designers with a stylus in hand.

As I drifted further, I became curious about other professions and how they may have changed over time. Check out this article I found and how there was a time when taxi drivers thought their j…


Waiting until the last possible second to get your credits in? Dreading committing your weekend / free time for 'work stuff'?
We know the feeling.
It's just...
ONE OF THOSE THINGS... that you don't seem to want to do simply because someone told you that you HAVE to. But it's like waking up early to hit the gym - we all know its not so bad once you get over the initial hump, and just commit!
So here ya go! If you need CE hours anytime soon - don't wait until the last second - we think this is a great one for you! Go ahead...COMMIT!

The cool thing about this one is that there are a few different options for you to choose from - even knock a couple out at once. 

Better yourself; better your business - we can all give a little free time for that!


Part 2
Options for Final Impressions
by Drake's on-staff Dentist - Larry R. Holt, DDS, FICD

WELCOME BACK! Hopefully by now you have a good understanding of critical edentulous anatomy. This entry will focus on selecting the correct tray to use for capturing said anatomy.
We all remember dental school and the initial alginate impression with over extended borders; sending that to the lab and having a custom tray fabricated.  This is still a sound method to having an appropriate tray to use, probably the gold standard.  Be sure when you use this work flow that you take some time and draw in your desired borders for the custom tray that is to be fabricated on your overextended model.  I like to have these borders slightly short so there is room to do some border molding.
A relatively recent innovation on the market is heat malleable stock trays that are specifically made for edentulous arches.  There are multiple manufacturers of these trays.  I have used several of them with success.  Whe…


Part 1 Edentulous Anatomy & What’s Important to Capture   by Drake's on-staff Dentist - Larry R. Holt, DDS, FICD
Have you ever suffered that sinking feeling when you deliver an upper denture and instead of making a satisfying suction sound, it just follows your hand back out of the mouth?   Well, you're not alone.
It happens to everyone.
And I plan to write in our blog until I have shared 
of information that I know on how to make good dentures and avoid those headaches.

It’s always best to start at the beginning.  Do a thorough intraoral exam of the patient and eliminate any possible pathology.  Once that’s out of the way, take a look at their existing dentures.  How are the borders?  Are they short?  Does the patient have decent suction with their current denture?  How much adhesive have they become addicted to?  First things first, if a patient is totally addicted to denture adhesives, don’t paint yourself into a corner by creating unrealistic expectations.  Th…


None of us can deny the digital days that we live in. This blog wasn't written on a scroll.  As far as the dental industry is concerned, what does this mean for us?
As a lab, there are a couple things that we can say for sure:
1) DIGITAL DOESN'T MAKE MAGIC Yes, wands work wonders!  They eliminate impression material expense, mess, and fluids. However, the general skill required in capturing tissue detail is still needed.  In crown prep, you still have to pack cord.  If not enough of the opposing and adjacent teeth are captured in the scan, we'll still call you for another impression as the integrity of the final product will most likely be compromised.  Scanning software won’t work for you if you expect it to work for you.
2) DIGITAL IS EXPENSIVE On top of the initial buying price of up to $49,000, you've got data package subscriptions and software updates ranging from $500 to $4000 per year.  Those numbers can be quite an investment for a business of any size.  Does expensive…