Stay tech savvy – Phillip Silver – Solvay

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  Posted by: Dental Design      11th January 2019

In recent decades significant changes have taken place across the dental industry, which are mostly due to the proliferation of new digital technologies.[1]

Advancements in imaging, diagnostics and software for example, have taken clinical work to an entirely new level and as a result, dental professionals have already experienced some substantial transformations in the way that they practice. Moreover, practices are able to provide higher quality care with increased accuracy, efficiency, productivity and patient comfort. However, in a profession that demands that you keep up or get left behind, it can sometimes be a challenge staying up-to-date.

Naturally, there is a new generation of dental professionals that have grown up in the digital age, who are very receptive to new technology. Nevertheless, the pace of innovation is rapid to say the least, and the demand for state-of-the-art dental procedures is predicted to drive growth in the global dental equipment market for some years to come.[2]Indeed, it has been revealed that many patients aged between 25 and 54 would change their current dental practice if it did not offer advanced technology treatment options, and increased importance is placed upon better, faster services.[3]Therefore, strategies are needed to help dental professionals to remain current and progress alongside innovation so that they may embrace and incorporate emerging technologies.

Clearly, attempting to keep up with every development and technological advancement within the dental arena would be a full time job on its own. Therefore, it is a good idea to find three or four reliable sources of dental industry news and regularly block out and dedicate some time each month to reading about everything pertaining to your particular field. It is important to consider your individual needs and interests and focus on what you would like to know more about and what you need to understand in more detail. Owners and managers also need to think about the needs of the practice; how to offer quality dental care while maintaining profitability and growth and think carefully and critically about how new technology may be implemented to help the practice to maintain a competitive edge.

One of the best ways of handling all the shifting currents and growth in advanced dental technology is to evolve with it. It is worth thinking about updating your equipment every few years but don’t be too rigid in your approach. Visit conferences and trade exhibitions and make sure that you invest in precisely what you need in terms of progression, productivity and profitability. Explore as many avenues as you can and be prepared to change direction, read articles, reviews and talk to colleagues to see what they are using and what they recommend.

It is wise to take advantage of the wealth of knowledge that you can glean from your dental laboratory as well. Research shows that most dentists (97 per cent) hold technical advice from their lab in high regard[4]and with the capabilities of digital technology expanding in all aspects of dental device and restoration manufacturing, it is a extremely valuable resource. Similarly, there have been some challenges in marrying up technology with suitable materials for use in dentistry,1 yet dental technicians are often able to shed light on the number one topic that clinicians would like advice on – material options.4

Take for example, removable partial dentures (RPDs). This is still a flourishing market and digital technology is making inroads in this sector by improving accuracy and efficiency as well as time and labour savings. However, clinicians may be unaware of the advances that have been made in the materials that are now available for RPDs. For instance, industry leader Solvay Dental 360™ has custom developed a material specifically for the fabrication of RPDs, which bridges the gap between traditional metal and flexible materials. Ultaire™ AKP is a high performance biocompatible polymer that is strong and durable but highly compliant and metal free. This material is ideal for the digital workflow and RPD frames created with Ultaire™ AKP offer stable retention, increased comfort and superior aesthetics. Dental professionals can ask their laboratory about this new generation material but Solvay Dental 360™ is passionate about education and empowering individuals within the industry to learn from each other. Indeed, the Solvay Dental 360™ team is available to deliver professional Lunch and Learn sessions in dental practices and offer clinicians and the dental team a unique learning opportunity.

Obviously, your “comfort zone” is a wonderful place, but not much develops there. Dentistry is a competitive market too, so it is vital to continue growing and updating your knowledge and skills. Take advantage of the contacts and resources that are available within the industry to “stay ahead of the game” and achieve your full potential.


To book a Solvay Dental 360™ Professional Lunch and Learn or to find more information Ultaire™ AKP and Dentivera™ milling discs,
please visit



[1]van Noort R. The future of dental devices is digital. Dent Mater. 2012 Jan; 28(1):3-12.[Accessed 5th September 2018]

[2]Research Nester. Research Reports. Dental Equipment Market : Global Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2024. Published On :  31st July, 2018 REP-ID-46.[Accessed 5th September 2018]

[3]What dental patients want. 2016 Futuredontics white paper.[Accessed 5thSeptember 2018]

[4]Lab Management Today (LMT) Survey. LMT Research Department 2013. Why Dentists Switch laboratories. [Accessed 5th September 2019]

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