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Dental care goes robotic
Updated: 12/10/2008 8:00:32 PM

Dental care goes robotic Those looking for orthodontic treatment may find themselves faced with more dental care options than ever before.

An article in First Coast News describes how some braces are designed in part by a robot - a technique which may cut the orthodontic treatment time significantly.

As part of the Sure Smile System, an orthodontist first makes a scan of a patient's teeth and mouth, which produces a 3D model that can be manipulated.

This technology allows the orthodontist to determine exactly how they would like the patient's ultimate smile to appear, moving each tooth individually.

Once the design has been finalized, it is sent to a laboratory, where robotic equipment creates the actual braces using a number of tiny bends to produce accurate results.

Dr. Kim Travers told the news provider that many people have found their time in braces reduced as a result of the treatment.

"Instead of getting out of braces after 24 months, they're getting out in my office [in] 16 and 18 months sometimes," she said.

A total of one-fifth of orthodontic patients is 18 or older, according to the American Association of Orthodontists.

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