Digital dependency and the need for speed – Phillip Silver Solvay

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  Posted by: Dental Design      22nd April 2019

People now expect fast, constant, seamless connectivity and two thirds of adults now regard the Internet as an essential part of life.[1]Furthermore, we have come to rely on technology for everyday tasks to such an extent that a large proportion of UK consumers admit to being far more impatient today than they were five years ago.[2]Due to this digital dependency, it may be said that we have become victims of our own success. Our need for speed has become insatiable and we expect everything to be available instantly, anywhere and at any time and we attach that fast pace to other parts of our lives. Nevertheless, technology that enables access to all types of information, products, resources and services at the touch of a button opens up a wealth of opportunities, allows us to be more efficient and productive and makes life considerably easier.

Society’s appetite for advanced technology and instant gratification is changing the face and future of dentistry. For instance, people are no longer happy to wait weeks to see a dentist, they want easy and speedy/fast access to services and if they choose to make an appointment they want to do it immediately. If they want their teeth whitened, they want them lightened several shades in minutes, not weeks and you would have to be living on another planet not to have seen all the promotions from businesses that offer ultra-fast treatments to straighten smiles or replace the teeth in as little as a day. Indeed, market research indicates that consumers are willing to pay more for instant results rather than solutions that offer long-term benefits.[3]Equally, patients are able to shop around very easily. They can gather information about products, treatments and services from hundreds of websites and are able to consult social media and read online reviews. Certainly, continual advancements and innovation needs to focus on speed and convenience, while also keeping up with the demands and expectations of patients that are significantly more sophisticated and well informed than ever before.

There is no doubt that technology has transformed the way in which dental practices operate. Digital systems and software have been integrated into nearly all areas to streamline and simplify tasks, enhance communication, reduce storage and save an inordinate amount of time and expense. Information is able to flow through the practice in real-time, making operations quicker and more efficient. Dental professionals are able to work with increased levels of accuracy and predictability using high performance equipment in a safe, orderly and productive environment. For instance, digital x-ray systems use up to 80 per cent less radiation than film x-rays, they produce clear, high-resolution images, which can be viewed almost instantly and help to detect pathologies in very early stages.[4]Also when combined with practice management software the images can be easily stored, archived and recalled efficiently as part of the patient’s electronic record.

Digitaltechnology is also revolutionising prosthodontics. It plays a significant role in the planning and design stages as well as the milling or printing of mock-ups, surgical guides, provisionals, fixed and removable final restorations. Simultaneously, new digital manufacturing techniques have invited the development of advanced, biocompatible materials such as Ultaire®AKP. This is a lightweight, high performance polymer that has been custom-developed by Solvay Dental 360®specifically for the fabrication of removable partial dentures (RPDs). Ultaire®AKP fits seamlessly into the digital workflow, whichreduces inaccuraciesand streamlines production efficiency to offer metal-free RPDs with exceptional retention, comfort and fit. 


To find out how you can to work smarter and faster to meet the growing demands of your patients, contact Solvay 360®now.



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



[1]Ofcom. A decade of digital dependency. August 2018.[Accessed 15th January 2019]

[2]Fetch. UK’s tech obsession has made us a ‘Fast and Furious’ nation. Research based on findings of a YouGov poll conducted between 19th-22ndMay of 2,078 UK adults aged 18+.[Accessed 15th January 2019]

[3]Mintel. Oral Care – UK – May 2014.[Accessed 15thJanuary 2019]

[4]Shah N. et al. Recent advances in imaging technologies in dentistry. World J Radiol. 2014 Oct 28; 6(10): 794–807.[Accessed 16thJanuary 2018]

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