The Link Between Dental Issues and Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Effective Treatment Methods

December 29, 2018

According to SNORE Australia, close to 10% of all women and 25% of Australian men are diagnosed with a clinically significant obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), with additional 4% of people struggling with symptomatic OSA, a partial or complete stoppage of airflow during sleep.

The most common symptoms include everything from snoring, episodes of choking, gasping or snorting during sleep, lack of daytime energy, headaches, and dry mouth, to insomnia, weight gain, fatigue, and feeling lethargic during the day. People exhibiting any of these symptoms are strongly advised to pay a visit to a sleep professional, as obstructive sleep apnea can cause severe damages to your dental, as well as overall health.

Dental problems

It is crucial to note that several dental issues can result from OSA. Due to our years-long experience working in the industry, Oceanic Dental Laboratory has had the opportunity to help a number of patients cure obstructive sleep apnea with top-quality dental devices. Some of the most common dental problems we have encountered over the years include:

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD/TMJ)

Should you notice an unusual pain in your jaw, it might mean that you reflexively clamp down your jaw to prevent your throat from blocking during an apnea episode. This subconscious activity puts immense stress, not just on your jaw and mouth, but your neck and shoulders as well. Since a number of dental issues like gum disease or tooth decay might result in similar pain, it is imperative to visit a dental professional and have your teeth checked and scanned using state of the art technology.


If the condition of your teeth suddenly deteriorates and results in a greater number of cracked and worn teeth, they might be the bruxism side-effect. In layman’s terms, bruxism can be described as teeth grinding which scrubs the protective surface of your teeth and increases their sensitivity. Over time, your teeth will start to damage, while you may experience trouble sleeping and severe headaches.

Causes of bruxism are versatile, stress and teeth misalignment being the most common ones, but the biggest risk factor is obstructive sleep apnea.

Excess cavities

People who struggle with obstructive sleep apnea are known to sleep with their mouth open. As a result, the protective saliva can dry out and cause excess enamel erosion and cavities.

Gum inflammation

According to the Korean Genome and Epidemiology study, periodontitis is common with people suffering from sleep apnea. Consequently, this dental disease can trigger gum inflammation causing the teeth to recede and detach. Here’s why: as sleep apnea forces you to sleep with your mouth open, they tend to dry overnight, thus creating an environment in which bacteria breed and thrive more quickly.  

Effective treatments with dental appliances

After a sleep study is performed to determine the severity of OSA, it is possible for a sleep professional to refer the patient to a dental professional for the treatment. Namely, dental devices are commonly prescribed to patients diagnosed with mild to moderate sleep apnea, or can be prescribed in combination with a CPAP device to lower the patient’s apnea index.

Depending on a specific type of a dental appliance, they can be designed to fit the upper and lower dental arch, pushing the tongue and lower jaw slightly forward. They prevent throat muscles from collapsing and obstructing the air passage, facilitating regular breathing patterns. On the other hand, certain dental devices are intended to fit around the tongue, keep it forward, and prevent it from collapsing back into the airway.

At Oceanic Dental Laboratory, we create custom-made dental devices that perfectly fit the patient’s mouth. Our aim is to deliver a product that will keep the tongue and the jaw in the most optimal position, ensuring the airway is unobstructed during sleep. The final product must be fabricated from appropriate and high-quality materials that ensure safety and comfort for the patient.

The benefits of dental devices

What many patients who are diagnosed with a mild to moderate sleep apnea highlight are that dental devices provide greater comfort in comparison to CPAP masks. Furthermore, the air pressure from the mask can cause your nose to go dry and get itchy, while there are no such side-effects from a dental device.

People who move during their sleep also benefit more from dental appliances which securely fit their mouth and as such don’t bother the wearer during the night. They also allow you to move the jaw to some extent so you can speak and yawn even after placing a dental appliance in the mouth.

Detect OSA in its Early Stages

Have you noticed any of the symptoms or issues listed above on you or your family member? Don’t postpone scheduling an appointment with the sleep clinic to determine whether or not it is obstructive sleep apnea. Even in mild and moderate cases, OSA can cause your oral and overall health to deteriorate, if left untreated.

5 Signs That You Should Look for a New Dental Lab

November 30, 2018

In recent years, we have witnessed a growth of the global dental laboratories market. What affected this trend was an increase in the geriatric population, dental tourism in emerging markets, and outsourcing fabrication of prosthetics and restorative products to dental labs.

At this point, partnering with a dental laboratory is not just a necessity, but a norm. However, in a highly competitive market, how can you separate the wheat from the chaff and select the one that will match your needs and criteria? You might have already joined forces with a practice but you’re still unsure whether the choice was right. Being in the industry for years, we know exactly what can be defined as quality dental laboratory services and can tell you exactly which activities point to the fact that you can establish a much better collaboration.

1. Delay in Service and Delivery of Dental Products

The quality of your service is directly affected by the work a dental laboratory conducts – if they are late, your patients are on hold as well. Thus, if the dental office you partnered with suddenly starts to deliver with a (not-so-)slight delay, it is only natural to ask for a reasonable explanation.

Even if everything operated smoothly in the beginning, the growing number of clients might have affected the dental laboratory’s turnaround times. Since this cannot be considered a valid excuse, you are encouraged to seek for a new dental lab that will treat you as if you are their only client, regardless of the number of partners they have at the moment.

2. Miscommunication

To ensure you always receive precisely what you and your patients require, it is imperative that you establish clear communication expectations. You are not expected to micromanage the dental laboratory, but it is highly recommended to check in on a regular basis (eg. once a week) to see whether you understood each other correctly and if they are working on a dental product you ordered.

If you start to notice that communication gaps happen more frequently than before, it is likely that the dental lab might be going through certain internal administrative changes that affect their operations.

3. Lowered Quality

Have you first established a testing period where you check the quality of products a certain dental lab delivers and ended up highly satisfied, only to question now whether their work has decreased in quality?

It is likely that after they felt the bond between you had strengthened, they stopped putting as much work as in the beginning; there might have been changes in staff; they could have changed the quality of materials they are working with, etc. Whichever the case, you – and especially your patients – are entitled to the highest quality dental work that will last for years to come.

At Oceanic Dental Laboratory we guarantee that all of our dental materials and manufacturing processes meet the European standards. We have established strong relationships with the most renowned material manufacturers to ensure all acrylic and denture teeth, along with alloys, ceramics, CAD and implant systems are first-class.

4. Overpriced Service

With product quality lowering and the price of services maintaining its high, you begin to wonder whether you are not getting the value for your money. And you may be right – you have the right to demand to receive what you paid for. And note one thing: never accept the decrease in price instead!

5. Outdated Equipment

To deliver dental products that will meet expectations, a dental laboratory has to take advantage of the latest technical solutions. Only cutting-edge equipment and modern materials can produce the expected results. In our digital dental laboratory, we operate only with the most reliable computer-aided design and manufacturing technologies of today. It allows us to give a more precise diagnosis, create more accurate images, and manufacture better quality products that are bound to satisfy the needs of a modern dental practice.


When your patients’ health is at stake, compromise is not an option. To continually deliver the highest quality dental services and solutions, the dental laboratory you establish the partnership with has to place your patients as a priority as well.

Evaluate the relationship you had so far: even if you collaborated without any hiccups in the beginning, a sudden change of affairs should not be taken lightly. Should any of the above issues occur on a regular basis, consider looking for a new dental laboratory that will match your requirements.

How Dentures Can Restore Functionality and Improve Aesthetics

October 19, 2018

How Dentures Can Restore Functionality and Improve Aesthetics

When people turn to their orthodontists to improve the aesthetic aspect of their teeth, more often than not they are presented with several dental procedures to choose from. Ultimately, they opt for the one that results in the highest level of functionality.   

We’ve already discussed the benefits and differences of orthodontic treatment and cosmetic dentistry procedures, and for the following article, we wish to focus on dentures -to highlight their benefits, provide the most essential maintenance tips, and give general input on what to expect after receiving dentures.

What are dentures and why you need them

Dentures represent a set of artificial teeth utilised to fully restore dental functionality. Though many associate them with old age, dentures can be prescribed to patients of all ages. Namely, whether or not a person needs dentures depends solely on the state of their teeth. At Oceanic Dental Laboratory, we create dentures made from the highest quality Ivoclar, Vertex or Valplast® materials, which means you can expect your teeth to look as close to natural as possible.   

There are several reasons why someone would decide to go for dentures instead of an alternative dental treatment or a procedure, the two most common being:

  • A patient has multiple missing teeth which are usually a result of a periodontal disease;
  • A patient has teeth with multiple cavities which require replacement.

After they receive dentures (and get used to them), patients report that they feel an improvement in eating and speech. This dental solution also helps prevent sagging of the facial muscles.

Types of dentures

In order to receive the most optimal dentures, it will require a few fitting appointments to ensure they are just right for your jaw. But before you get to this part, you have to consult with your dentist which dentures you should receive. This depends on the overall state of your teeth, and there are two options:

  • Partial dentures. As their name suggests, partial dentures are suitable for patients who only require certain teeth to be replaced. They can be built on a chrome metal framework, or made of acrylic or Valplast® materials, and are designed to attach to your teeth. A partial denture relies on some of your remaining natural teeth which serve as anchors and keep the artificial teeth in place.
  • Complete dentures. A complete denture is created for patients who have no teeth remaining in their mouth. There are two types:
    • conventional complete denture which is placed only after the gum tissue is completely healed from teeth removal and any other procedures;
    • immediate full denture that can be placed immediately after the last tooth has been removed.  

When it comes to materials used to create partial and complete dentures, two of the most commonly used are:

  • Acrylic dentures. They provide excellent aesthetics and can blend with your natural teeth.
  • Chrome dentures. They provide excellent aesthetics like acrylic ones but are considered more comfortable and secure. Chrome dentures also showed to be easier in terms of oral hygiene.
  • Valplast®. They provide excellent aesthetics, are very comfortable, and are metal free and highly retentive.

Living with dentures

Although the change is for the good, it will take some time to get used to dentures. Some of the most common challenges people face are:

  • Slipping dentures. This most commonly occurs while smiling, sneezing, coughing, or laughing, which can easily be solved with a gentle bite of the dentures, followed by swallowing that will put them back in place. Getting a denture to reline at your Dentist will solve this.
  • Loose dentures. In the beginning, patients are advised to use some denture adhesive to keep the teeth in place until they get used to their dentures. Getting a denture to reline will improve the fit if it I an old denture.
  • Irritation. It will take time to accommodate to a foreign object in the mouth, and a light pain is quite expected. Consult with your dentist to receive mild painkillers, or try gargling with salt water to cleanse the irritated area.
  • Eating Until you adjust to the dentures fully, stick to soft foods that don’t require much chewing.  

Best denture care

In time, dentures require relining, rebasing or a complete remake, all of which may result from normal and expected wear. To know whether or not it is time for any of these procedures, it is essential to pay a regular visit to the dentist.

In the meantime, patients are advised to:

  • Always keep their dentures in either plain water or in a denture cleanser soaking solution when they are not being used actively;
  • Use only a pea-sized drop of adhesive, if at all;
  • Brush the dentures thoroughly on a daily basis to remove any leftover food and plaque;
  • Brush the dentures over a folded towel in case they fall, since dentures are quite fragile;
  • Brush their tongue and gums every morning prior to inserting the dentures.

Bottom line

Dentures are an effective way to completely restore dental functionality after losing a few, or all teeth. When created by dental professionals and from quality materials, they can replace natural teeth, both in terms of function and visual appeal.

How to Choose the Best Dental Lab to be Your Partner

August 23, 2018

In recent years, the popularity of orthodontic treatments has been rising at a steady pace. Out of all procedures, dental crowns, veneers, implants, and bridges are at the very top of the list of the most commonly performed dental cosmetic procedures.

Considering this growing trend in the dental industry, it is imperative for dental practices to deliver orthodontic products and services that would show satisfactory results. To do so, they need to partner up with a reputable dental laboratory that will benefit their business.

What to look for?

The respondents of a 2013 survey indicated that certain esthetic considerations and the dental lab’s specialty represent the two main factors they consider when choosing a laboratory to collaborate with. Still, there are several additional factors to be included before making a final decision.

Top quality and continually high delivery

The digital dental lab has to deliver products that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. To ensure the final result is satisfactory, it has to utilise materials with a proven reputation. At Oceanic Dental Lab, fabrication materials exceed European quality standards, and the equipment we use is compliant with ADA guidelines.

Additionally, the consistency in performance should be tracked as well, as 1 in 3 dentists decide to change the lab due to inconsistent quality and recurring technical issues. A full-service dental lab should deliver competitive turnaround times, without sacrificing the quality of the final outcome.

Technological advancement

The dental industry is advancing at a staggering rate, and a digital dental laboratory has to continually invest in top-class digital dental technology to keep up with market demands. Patients expect faster and more effective results which can be achieved with state-of-the-art digital equipment. The idea is to completely replace the traditional, less-effective and time-consuming techniques.  

In our lab, we have incorporated CAD/CAM technologies to allow us to deliver more precise results. Thus we deliver at greater accuracy and speed, and at the same time – at a lowered cost. Just some of the digital technologies our dental partners benefit from include digital radiography, TekScan, dental lasers, digital moulds and many more.  


To operate the novel pieces of equipment that are entering the market, the digital dental laboratory needs to invest in the continual education of its staff. The theoretical and practical knowledge they obtain will greatly influence the outcome of every project they work on in the future, thus affecting the quality of patient care.

Healthy relationship

For the collaboration between the dental practice and the digital dental lab to yield great results, the relationship has to be built on transparency and honesty. While the highest level of quality is expected at all times, changing circumstances can affect the final execution and delivery of patient care. Slight infrequent setbacks can be tolerated, but to prevent the drop-off in quality from occurring in the future, dentists are advised to send constructive feedback. As a result, you will build a long-term partnership with the digital dental lab.

Ensure that the lab employs communicative and responsive staff ready to address your immediate requirements and answer any urgent questions.


Since you will be collaborating with a dental lab on a daily basis to ship the products back and forth, its vicinity may seem paramount. However, by no means should you limit yourself to several dental labs in your area – although they might be located at a relatively great distance from your dental office, ensure they provide local and accessible services.

Oceanic Dental Lab is stationed across the continent, and our prompt courier service delivers our materials in all metro areas of Brisbane and Sydney, across Melbourne and Adelaide, all the way to Perth.

The bottom line

It all boils down to selecting several prospect digital dental laboratories to get in touch with. For a successful, long-term cooperation, a dental practice needs to communicate their priorities and expectations in advance.

Orthodontic Treatment vs. Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures: Pros and Cons

August 6, 2018

Not many are born with a picture-perfect Hollywood smile. But all of us want one, don’t we?

With advanced aesthetic solutions at our disposal, the majority decide to turn to dental professionals to correct our minor or greater imperfections. While lying in a dental chair, we are offered a variety of options to correct these “deformities”.

A dentist is there to provide expert advice on the best approach for a specific case, but still leave it to the patient to make the final decision.

Recently we have discussed the primary differences between dental veneers and crowns, the details of the procedures, the recovery time and their respective pros and cons. But what to do when a third choice is on the table?

Without a doubt, both orthodontic treatment and cosmetic dentistry procedures deliver results, but at what pace, and how successfully? Let’s dissect both options:

Orthodontic Treatment

Generally speaking, orthodontic treatment is usually prescribed for children and teenagers, however, it is not so uncommon for an adult to opt for braces as well.


  • Cosmetic improvement

The Orthodontic treatment produces great results for patients who are diagnosed with some type of malocclusion, including underbite, overbite or crossbite. Braces are also effective for people who have minor dental misalignment, but overall healthy teeth – they get to keep the teeth intact and simply line them up correctly.

  • Health benefits

Although orthodontics can be considered a cosmetic dental treatment, it comes with a number of other benefits. It affects the long-term health of the teeth, as well as a person’s jaw joints and gums. Namely, by properly adjusting the teeth, braces spread the biting pressure over all our teeth. As a result, a person no longer puts the strain on the muscles of the jaw which occurred due to misalignment.   


  • Lengthy treatment

Unfortunately, it can take time for the results of an orthodontic treatment to be apparent. The length of the treatment differs from one person to another and can take up to several years. Furthermore, patients who opt for fixed braces are required to visit their orthodontist every 4 to 6 weeks for readjustments.

  • Discomfort

At the beginning of the treatment, the patient will feel discomfort before getting used to having braces in their mouth. Furthermore, people who get fixed braces and are required to go to regular adjustments are likely to feel sore afterward due to additional pressure that is being put on the teeth.

  • Quality of the final result

The success of the orthodontic treatment depends not just on the dental professionals skills, but also involvement on the patient’s side. Braces come with a long list of instructions (what to eat, how to clean your teeth and clean the braces, etc.), and if they are not followed, the results are likely not going to be desirable.

  • Temporary results

It is quite natural for minor tooth movements to occur throughout a lifetime. Considering, it is quite possible that people who had undergone an orthodontic treatment during their childhood still get some teeth impairments later in life as well.

Cosmetic dentistry procedures

While adult braces are gaining in popularity, cosmetic dentistry procedures still maintain top choice. There are several types of cosmetic dentistry procedures, but for the purpose of this article, we are going to focus on dental crowns and veneers solely.

Depending on the severity of the imperfection, a patient usually decides between dental veneers and dental crowns, and can as a result get a complete teeth reconstruction. Both procedures can change the size, shape, and colour of the teeth, all while keeping the smile completely natural.

  • Fast results

Dental veneers and dental crow

ns deliver the fastest results. And it takes no more than several visits to the dentist: the first visit is reserved for trimming of the tooth and moulding, and on the second (or third in some instances) the patient can already receive the permanent solution. The entire process doesn’t have to take more than 2 or 3 weeks.

  • Natural results

Thanks to advancements in digital dentistry, a dentist can utilise state-of-the-art technology to produce more precise results. At Oceanic Dental Lab, we understand that traditional stone models are not as reliable as virtual impressions. We are able to deliver more accurate and better fitting restorations, which not only benefit the quality of the final outcome but also bring the amount of time required to finish the entire cosmetic procedure down to a minimum.

  • Minimal discomfort

Mild soreness is possible after the anaesthetic wears off, however, it is expected to fade away in no more than 24 hours. After that, the patient can continue with his normal routine and keep up their eating habits without any restrictions.

  • Minimal aftercare

As opposed to braces, veneers and crowns don’t require any special aftercare beyond good oral hygiene practices.


  • Healthy teeth damage

When misalignment is minimal, trimming might not be a better option as it requires removal of a smaller or larger chunk of a healthy tooth. In such cases, the dentist usually recommends braces as they keep the teeth intact.  

Bottom line

Upon reviewing the above-listed pros and cons, a general conclusion that can be drawn is that both orthodontic treatment and dental crowns/veneers can produce great results, but the former one requires a lot more time. Although there are patients who prefer to fix their imperfections as soon as possible, others who are blessed with healthy teeth chose to wait in order to keep their teeth intact. Ultimately, it is up to the patient to decide based on their wishes and preferences.

Bridging the dental labs and dentist

July 28, 2018

Dental labs play an important part in the workflow of any dentist and is required for quality products for the patients.

Practical experience is gained in work placement laboratories where students produce appliances for patient treatments with minimal contact with clinics or dentists. There seems to be little provision to integrate education with dental undergraduates. Traditionally, teaching hospitals ran dental technical training programmes which could allow contact and sometimes an element of integrated learning for clinical and technical students.

However, recently in cities such as London these dental hospital-based courses have closed due to a lack of funding. Some of those schools now offer work experience to college-based student technicians, which may involve contact with dental students as well as the opportunity for joint education.

Normally, a dental laboratory constructs any one of a variety of artificial dental structures or appliances, i.e., dentures, partial dentures, crowns and bridges, which serve to replace a patient’s lost dentition in an aesthetically pleasing manner. These structures are commonly referred to as “cases” during their fabrication in a dental laboratory and are fabricated in accordance with a prescription provided by the dentist.

There are a number of systems presently available in the marketplace that automate certain aspects of the operation of a dental laboratory in the fabrication of the dental appliances or cases. However, these prior art systems leave much to be desired. Most importantly, these systems are concerned primarily with the record keeping functions of the dental laboratory and often do little more than automate the generation of invoices sent to the dentists prescribing the appliances. Because these presently available systems are geared toward the limited functions of record keeping, they are arranged to gather only the information relating to a case that is necessary for generating bills.

Effective communication between dentist and dental technician is often poor. It was the view of the dental technicians who responded that newly qualified dentists do not have an appropriate understanding of technical techniques. Dental schools are still not preparing new graduates to communicate effectively with dental laboratories.

Good communication between clinician and dental technician is VITAL if a good end result is to be achieved. This must continue to be taught and reinforced to undergraduate dentists.

Veneers vs. Crowns: A Detailed Comparison

July 19, 2018

The most recent statistics published by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research indicate that oral health, in general, has improved over the last few decades. More than half of adults between the ages of 20 and 60 report that they have visited their dentist in the last year, and about 25% rate their oral health as very good, or even excellent.

Nevertheless, many still believe that there is always work that can be done to improve the aesthetic aspect of their teeth.

Having just one tooth a bit crooked, chipped or discoloured is often unacceptable. For this reason, a number of people decide to undergo cosmetic dental treatment that will improve their smile. Your dentist is more likely to recommend dental veneers or dental crowns, but how can you decide between the two if they leave the decision entirely up to you?

Here’s everything you need to know about both procedures before making a final choice.

Dental Crowns

Dental crowns are designed to cover an entire tooth down to the gum, thus replacing the tooth’s outer surface, masking its imperfections. They are adequate for severely broken teeth, significantly malpositioned teeth, as well as in cases where there is high caries activity. They are also an ideal solution in cases when a decayed tooth cannot be restored with a filling, however, the tooth has to be cleared of all decay entirely before covering the tooth with a dental crown.


If the tooth you are planning to cover with a tooth crown has more serious health issues, they will have to be resolved first. It is imperative to first remove all decay and only then take a mould of the tooth. While you are waiting for the tooth crown to be created in the lab, you will get a temporary one from your dentist. Upon your final visit, the dentist will test the position of the crown to see whether it requires slight readjustments.


On average, it takes no more than 4 to 5 hours for the anaesthetic to wear off. Some moderate pain is expected, as well as sensitivity around the tooth treated area, so we advise you to refrain from any cold or hot beverages several days after getting a dental crown.

Should you experience any severe pain, it is best to consult with your dentist.  

How long does the crown last?

If properly adjusted and maintained regularly, you can expect a dental crown to last more than 15 years should you maintain daily flossing and brushing.

Dental Veneers

Dental veneers cover only the front surface of the tooth. Most commonly, dentists recommend tooth veneers to cover permanent tooth discolouration that cannot be treated with a whitening treatment. Veneers are also a great option when certain teeth are just moderately broken, malpositioned, or have mild-to-moderate caries.


On your first visit, the dentist removes as much enamel needed to create space for the veneer. Next, they take a mould of the tooth to create a permanent veneer in the lab. A temporary veneer can be placed in the meantime.

When the time comes to place a permanent veneer, the tooth is first prepared for bonding. The dentist uses cement which hardens up after the application of the laser beam. Between 7 to 14 days upon the procedure you are required to schedule a checkup of the placement of the veneer and your gum response to the treatment.


It will take around 4 to 5 hours for the numbness to wear off. It is advisable to avoid food and beverages that are too hot or cold for the next 24 hours. Other than that, you will be able to go back to your regular routine.  

Should you experience any severe pain, it is best to consult with your dentist.  

How long does the veneer last?

If properly adjusted and maintained regularly, you can expect a tooth veneer to last more than 15 years.

Bottom line

While both tooth crowns and dental veneers produce outstanding results, the two treatments differ a lot and have different applications.


  • Dental crown
  • Use: They cover the entire tooth and can be used for both moderate and more severe tooth damage. A dental crown represents a new outer side of the treated tooth. As a result, they can reshape the tooth completely and provide it with a significantly different colour.
  • Size: Thick and require more trimming than veneers.
  • Trimming: Depends on a specific case, but you can expect your dentist to take off at least 1 – 2 mm. Research published in The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry suggests that dentists, on average, trim away between 63 and 73% of the tooth’s anatomical crown. In fact, the greater the amount of decay, the more trimming is needed.
  • Durability: Tooth crowns are extremely durable and strong.


Dental veneer


  • Use: They cover only the front of the tooth and are used only to mask discolouration or slightly chipped or damaged teeth. They produce a slight-to-moderate change in tooth shape and colour. Veneers are adequate for teeth that are healthy.
  • Size: Veneers are on average 1 mm thick (or even less).
  • Trimming: Require far less trimming than dental crowns. Minimal-prep may require as little as 3% reduction of the anatomical crown. In more extreme cases, trimming may reach 30%. All trimming is done on the front side of the tooth, while the backside if left intact.
  • Durability: As in some instances dental veneers require little or almost no trimming at all, they are reversible.


Evidently, note that tooth veneers are mainly used for minor aesthetic improvements and cannot be used to save a more damaged tooth – this is where a dental crown represents a far better (that is, the only) alternative.

What to look for when searching for a Dental Lab?

June 29, 2018

As a dental lab in the US, we pride ourselves in being reputable both in quality and integrity.

The highest regard in terms of manufacturing certifications available to dental laboratories are through the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). The ISO develops standards through the consensus of standards organizations from more than 150 countries. These members represent both the private as well as public sectors of countries all around the globe. ISO standards are thought to represent the utmost interests and needs of the broader global society.

There will constantly be a need for talented dental lab technicians to create restorations and dental devices, especially ones of the highest quality. While improvements in technology and materials that’s commonly used in dentistry will allow dentists and their trained team members to make more of these products themselves

A wide range of institutions offer associate degree programs to become a technician. In addition, an interested person can complete an apprenticeship program that have lasted for five years. After the apprenticeship or associate degree has been finished, the candidate will need to pass an test that is administered directly by the National Board for Certification in Dental Laboratory Technology

Throughout our history, Oceanic Dental Lab has developed clear core values, all aimed at creating the highest level of customer satisfaction. Our goal is to be an undisposable part of your team with our highest calling being to assist you the dentist in creating patient satisfaction, translating to enhancing your clinic’s bottom line and professional fulfillment of dentists nationwide.

Lithium Discilicate, Emax, Lisi Press

April 23, 2018

 IPS e.max Lithium Disilicate Glass Ceramic




For more than thirty years, metal ceramic restorations have been considered the restorative materials of choice in dentistry.[1] Their good mechanical properties met the requirements of dental clinicians, while their reasonable esthetics satisfied the tastes of patients.


However, with patients’ increasing interest in life-looking restorations instead of artificial ones, and with the growing concerns regarding the biocompatibility of the metal, researchers have been on the run to find novel restorative materials.


The quest to find a material that transmits and refracts light like a natural tooth has inspired research into all-ceramic restorations. In the last two decades, a number of all-ceramic materials have been available for dental restorations. Among these materials, Lithium Disilicate Glass Ceramic is considered one of the most popular due to its high strength, good color stability, high resistance to wear, and high biocompatibility.[2]


Lithium Disilicate excellent esthetics and good biomechanical properties make it suitable for the fabrication of monolithic restorations and veneered restorations in the anterior and posterior region.



Composition of Lithium Disilicate Glass Ceramics:


Lithium disilicate glass ceramic, particularly Li2O-SiO2 system, is the first material classified as glass ceramic. Discovered by Stookey in the fifties, glass ceramics have proved to have better mechanical properties over base glass.[3][4] Since then, the binary Li2O-SiO2 system have been extensively studied and applied in dental restorations.


However, studies have shown that the binary Li2O-SiO2 system has poor chemical durability, inadequate translucency and uncontrolled microcrack formation. Therefore, researchers started to opt for multicomponent glass ceramic, notably adding components such as Al2O3 and K2O to lithium silicate glasses which have been proved to promote the thermo-mechanical properties of the final material.[5]


Several other constituents like ZnO, ZrO2 and P2O5 were also introduced to further improve the properties of glass ceramic.[6] For example, the addition P2O5 can promote the nucleation and crystallization processes in lithium disilicate glasses.[7] For that reason, the adjunction of phosphorus oxide produces fine-interlocking microstructure and therefore resulting in high mechanical strength of the final material.[8]



Manufacturing & processing of IPS e.max lithium disilicate:


In 2005, Ivoclar Vivadent introduced the IPS e.max lithium disilicate glass ceramic. 11 years after its release, this all-ceramic material has been used in more than 100 million restorations with more than 96 percent success rate.[9]


The IPS e.max lithium disilicate is composed of quartz (SiO2), lithium dioxide (Li2O), phosphorus oxide (P2O5), alumina (Al2O3), potassium oxide (K2O), and other components. These powders are combined to produce a glass melt which is then poured in molds to cool down to room temperature. The partially crystallized glass ingots, containing lithium metasilicate (Li2SiO3) and lithium disilicate (Li2Si2O5) crystal nuclei, are then processed differently depending on each technique.


The IPS e.max CAD (Computer aided design) “blue block” is milled and shaped by a computer. The milling procedure doesn’t engender excessive bur wear or chipping of the material, and that is due to the presence of the intermediate lithium meta-silicate crystal structure (Li2SiO3).

A post-milling heat treatment of the partially crystalized fabricated ceramic restoration at approximately 840-850ºC dissolves completely the metasilicate phase and crystallizes the lithium disilicate phase. This heat treatment allows the fabricated restoration to achieve its full density and strength.


For lithium disilicate ceramics, the final crystallization is achieved after only 25 minutes of heat treatment, allowing faster delivery of restorations.[10] In contrast, a zirconia core machined by CAD/CAM can require up to 8 hours of post-milling processing time.[11]


Throughout the heating process, the initially bluish color of the glass ingot changes to a tooth-like shade. In contrary to alumina- or zirconia-based ceramic cores, lithium disilicate ceramic doesn’t require additional porcelain layering for esthetic improvement. A staining procedure is sufficient to give the lithium silicate-based restoration a realistic tooth-like appearance, allowing the initial block to be milled to the final contour.


The glass ingots can also be processed using the lost-wax hot pressing technique (IPS e.max Press). The ingots are processed similarly to the IPS e.max CAD, as they are composed of different powders that are melted and cooled to room temperatures. Following the glass formation, ingots are nucleated and crystallized in one heat treatment. These ingots are then pressed at approximately 920ºC for 5-15 minutes to form a 70% crystalline lithium disilicate restoration.


The crystals of both the IPS e.max Press and IPS e.max CAD are the same in composition (70% of crystalline lithium disilicate Li2Si2O5), but the size and length of these crystals are different. Hence why the material properties such as the coefficient of thermal expansion, modulus of elasticity, and chemical solubility are the same, while fracture strength and fracture toughness are slightly higher for the IPS e.max Press.[12]





The flexural strength of dental restorative materials represents the capacity to tolerate chewing force.[13] As shown in Figure 1, the flexural strength of IPS e.max CAD can reach 360 MPa, while it can go up to 400 MPa for IPS e.max Press. These values are twice greater than those of other ceramic materials that do not require any layering material.


Lithium disilicate glasses offer the same value of flexural strength through the entire restoration. As a result, restorations showcase a monolithic strength that can resist masticatory stress especially in the posterior region. The even distribution of stress without concentration sites is crucial in clinical outcomes. Stress concentration sites in ceramic restorations can result in surface flaws, porosities, and internal disintegration.[14]


Figure 1: Comparison of the flexural strength of pressed ceramics.[15]

* Not registered trademarks of Ivoclar Vivadent AG


Besides strength testing, a chewing simulation testing performed on various restorative material for crowns (e.g leucite glass ceramic, metal ceramic, zirconia) to examine the nature of fatigue on these materials, showed that lithium disilicate demonstrates superior results.[16]


From an esthetic standpoint, ceramics are the best when it comes to mimicking the natural tooth appearance.[17] The optical behavior of ceramic materials differ from system to system and this should be taken into consideration during the selection of which system to be used.[18] Lithium disilicate material is very versatile, as its availability in four translucencies allows its usage in different types of restorations (Veneers, Inlays/Onlays, anterior crowns, posterior crowns, etc.).

Wear resistance and compatibility are vital properties of all restorative materials. In some cases, the wear can concern the restorative material itself (e.g composites), while in case of lithium disilicate and other ceramic materials, the wear concerns more the enamel of the antagonist  tooth. The wear of the opposing enamel by lithium disilicate is considered to be the lowest when compared to other ceramics and even enamel.[19]


The biocompatibility of ceramic materials have been extensively studied. In 2008, Brackett, Wataha, and others[20] examined the cytotoxicity response of lithium disilicate materials and concluded that: “In spite of the mitochondrial suppression caused by the lithium disilicate materials in the current study, these materials do not appear to be any more cytotoxic than other materials that are successfully used for dental restorations. The lithium disilicate materials were less cytotoxic than several commonly used composite materials and were comparable to cytotoxicity reported for several alloys and glass ionomers.”


Dental Applications of IPS e.max lithium disilicate glass ceramic:


The lithium disilicate (LS2) IPS e.max effectively merges esthetics and efficiency. The high-strength glass-ceramic can be applicated in a variety of clinical situations. The indication spectrum ranges from thin veneers (0.3 mm) and minimally invasive inlays and onlays to partial crowns, full crowns[21] and implant superstructures.[22] The material is also suitable for fabricating crowns, splinted crowns or 3 unit bridges up to the second premolar on top of implant abutments. In addition, three-unit bridges in both the anterior region and the premolar region can be produced. Lithium disilicate is also used to fabricate posterior bridges as long as it is supported by zirconium oxide.

The concept of modern dentistry is preserving as much saine tooth structure as possible. This modern vision has instructed clinicians to opt for minimally invasive restorations. IPS e.max lithium disilicate has enamel-like properties, hence offering durable solutions for restoring the function, esthetics and biomechanics of teeth when using conservative techniques. The combination of the high flexural strength, ideal fracture toughness and clinical longevity of IPS e.max lithium disilicate allow the fabrication of full-contour crowns of only 1 mm thickness, which then can be placed using the adhesive cementation method.

Posterior restorations withstand high stresses resulting from masticatory forces. The masticatory loading in posterior regions questions the durability of minimally invasive restorations in said regions. Several studies showed that the superior mechanical properties of Lithium disilicate make it suitable for the fabrication of posterior restorations.[23]

Although the flexural strength of zirconia is 2.5 times higher than lithium disilicate glass ceramic, the relative load-bearing capacity changes when both of these materials are bonded to and backed by tooth structures.

When supported by dentin, the fracture load of zirconia restorations is about 1.8 times higher than lithium disilicate glass-ceramics. This ratio drops dramatically to only 1.3 times when the restorations are supported by enamel backed by dentin. This is noticeable when ceramic restorations thickness varies between 0.6 mm and 1.4 mm, implying that lithium disilicate can be convenient for use in conservative restorations in which the preparation can be confined to enamel.[24]

IPS e.max lithium silicate glass ceramics offer a wide variety of translucency levels. Therefore, practitioners can camouflage dark tooth structure that results from stained teeth or titanium abutments. You can inform the laboratory about the shade of the tooth structure, and the dental technician will pick the IPS e.max lithium disilicate ingot with the suitable opacity level for maximum esthetic results.


Contraindications of IPS e.max lithium disilicate:


All-ceramic materials have a major drawback represented in their susceptibility to fatigue mechanisms, which can remarkably diminish their strength resulting in higher risks of fracture. The mastication forces can reach 250 N, while the forces due to clenching/grinding can reach up to 800 N.[25]


The rehabilitation of heavily abraded occlusion on patients with parafunctional habits is a major challenge in restorative dentistry. Therefore, patients with increased chewing forces due to bruxism or other, can not benefit from all-ceramic crowns, including lithium disilicate ones.[26] Special design features, such as cantilevers, maryland bridges, inlay retained

bridges are also considered to be a contraindication for all-ceramic restorations.[27]


On their turn, wide spans (4 and more unit bridges) and posterior bridges reaching into the molar region are not recommended to be fabricated using all-ceramic systems.


Other contraindications of lithium disilicate IPS e.max can be deep subgingival preparations and failure to observe the necessary minimum connector dimensions and layer thicknesses.




Since its release, IPS e.max lithium disilicate glass ceramics showcased outstanding clinical performance. The Oceanic Dental Laboratory offers dental clinicians across Australia the chance to meet the expectations of their patients with e.max crowns, bridges and inlays. The perennity of IPS e.max lithium disilicate monolithic restorations can give credibility to your practice and, on the long run, help you generate organic leads. Until the release of a new all-ceramic system with a wider spectrum of applications, the lithium disilicate IPS e.max will offer a great chance for dental clinicians to match intraoral and esthetic requirements.




[1] Phillips’ Science of Dental Materials, edl1. Saunders, 2003

[2] Braga RR, Ballester RY, Daronch M. Influence of time and adhesive system on the extrusion shear strength between feldspathic porcelain and bovine dentin. Dental Materials. 2000; 16(4):303-310.

[3] S.D. Stookey, Ind. Eng. Chem., 51, 805 (1959).

[4] P. W. McMillan, Glass-Ceramics, Academic Press, London, UK, 1979.

[5] D. U. Thlyaganov, S. Agathopoulos, I. Kansal, and P. Valerio, “Synthesis and properties of lithium disilicate glass-ceramics in the system SiO2-Al2O3-K2O-Li2O,” Ceramics International, vol. 35, no. 8, pp. 3013–3019, 2009.

[6] X. Zheng, G. Wen, L. Song, and X. X. Huang, “Effects of P2O5 and heat treatment on crystallization and microstructure in lithium disilicate glass ceramics,” Acta Materialia, vol. 56, no. 3, pp. 549–558, 2008.

[7] Y. Iqbal, W. E. Lee, D. Holland, and P. F. James, “Crystal nucleation in P2O5-doped lithium disilicate glasses,” Journal of Materials Science, vol. 34, no. 18, pp. 4399–4411, 1999.

[8] S. C. von Clausbruch, M. Schweiger, W. Höland, and V. Rheinberger, “The effect of P2O5 on the crystallization and microstructure of glass-ceramics in the SiC2-Li2O-K2O-ZnO-P2O5 system,” Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, vol. 263-264, pp. 388–394, 2000.


[10] Reich S, Schierz O. Chair-side generated posterior lithium disilicate crowns after 4 years. [updated 2012 Nov 8];Clin Oral Investig.

[11] Fasbinder DJ. Materials for chairside CAD/CAM restorations. Compend Contin Educ Dent. 2010;31:702–704. 706, 708–709.

[12] IPS e.max lithium disilicate: The Future of All-Ceramic. Link:

[13] Charlton DG, Roberts HW, Tiba A. Measurement of select physical and mechanical properties of 3 machinable ceramic materials. Quintessence Int. 2008;39:573–579.

[14] Siarampi E, Kontonasaki E, Papadopoulou L, Kantiranis N, Zorba T, Paraskevopoulos KM, Koidis P. Flexural strength and the probability of failure of cold isostatic pressed zirconia core ceramics. J Prosthet Dent. 2012;108:84–95.

[15] Wear of ten dental restorative materials in five wear simulators—Results of a round robin test

Heintze, S.D. et al. Dental Materials , Volume 21 , Issue 4 , 304 – 317

[16] Using a chewing simulator for fatigue testing of metal ceramic crowns. Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, Volume 65, Issue null, Pages 770-780. S.D. Heintze, A. Eser, D. Monreal, V. Rousson

[17] Griggs JA. Recent advances in materials for all-ceramic restorations. Dent Clin North Am. 2007;51(3):713-27,viii.

[18] Raptis NV, Michalakis KX, Hirayama H. Optical behavior of current ceramic systems. Int J Periodontics Restorative Dent 2006;26(1 ):31-41.

[19] Wear of Enamel against Dental Ceramics. Sorenson, et al. J Dent res. Vol 78, 1999 #909

[20] In vitro cytotoxic response to lithium disilicate dental ceramics. Brackett, Martha Goël et al.

Dental Materials , Volume 24 , Issue 4 , 450 – 456

[21] Clinical evaluation of 121 lithium disilicate all-ceramic crowns up to 9 years. Toman M, Toksavul S. Quintessence Int. 2015 Mar;46(3):189-97.

[22] Retentive strength of monolithic all-ceramic crowns on implant abutments. Weyhrauch M, Igiel C, Wentaschek S, Pabst AM, Scheller H, Weibrich G, Lehmann KM. Int J Comput Dent. 2014;17(2):135-44


[23] Rekow ED, Silva NR, Coelho PG, Zhang Y, Guess P, Thompson VP. Performance of dental ceramics: challenges for improvements. Journal of Dental Research. 2011;90:937–52.

[24] Load-bearing properties of minimal-invasive monolithic lithium disilicate and zirconia occlusal onlays: Finite element and theoretical analyses. Ma, Li et al. Dental Materials , Volume 29 , Issue 7 , 742 – 751

[25] Studart AR, Filser F, Kocher P, Gauckler LJ. Fatigue of zirconia under cyclic loading in water and its implications for the design of dental bridges. Dent Mater. 2007;23:106–14.

[26] van Dijken JW, Hasselrot L. A prospective 15-year evaluation of extensive dentin-enamel-bonded pressed ceramic coverages. Dental Materials. 2010;26:929–39.

[27] Conrad HJ, Seong WJ, Pesun IJ. Current ceramic materials and systems with clinical recommendations: A systematic review. J Prosthet Dent. 2007;98:389–404.

Talon Occlusal Splints

April 23, 2018

Talon Occlusal Splint: A Must-Have Treatment Option for Every Dental Practice

According to the Glossary of Prosthodontic Terms [8th ed.], “occlusal splint is defined as any removable artificial occlusal surface used for diagnosis or therapy affecting the relationship of the mandible to the maxilla. It may be used for occlusal stabilization, for treatment of temporomandibular disorders, or to prevent wear of the dentition.”

TMJ dysfunction or temporomandibular disorder is a broad term used to describe the pain and abnormal functioning of the muscles of mastication and the muscles that are responsible for temporomandibular joint function. This can happen as a result of blow on the joint area or face, malaligned teeth, inflammatory or degenerative arthritis or due to parafunctional activity like bruxism.

Bruxism is the habit of involuntary grinding and clenching of teeth specifically during sleep. As it happens without the knowledge of the patient, it is difficult to diagnose in the initial stage. This habit can play havoc with the entire stomatognathic system as the side effects are plenty like headache, muscle soreness, heavy attrition of teeth resulting in sensitivity and so on.

Occlusal splints, the sure-shot solution for this problem, work by achieving occlusal stabilization. It is basically, the technique of equalizing the tooth contacts on the occlusal aspect so that there is no tooth movement once the mandible is in the state of closure. That is why, occlusal stabilization is essential for the teeth, TMJ and the jaw muscles to function optimally. The main objective of using an occlusal splint is to guard the TMJ discs against traumatic or excessive forces that can perforate or even displace the discs permanently. The primary focus is on achieving a stable occlusion so that there is an improvement in muscle function and any pain related to the condition is also alleviated.

Talon Occlusal Splints: Why are they a class apart?

As a matter of fact, occlusal splint therapy is considered as the safest, extremely effective and non-invasive treatment modality to cure or relieve TMJ dysfunction. Oceanic Dental laboratory takes pride in providing to the partner dentists one of the most innovative technology in splint therapy: Talon occlusal splints.

Talon occlusal splints are made of a unique thermoplastic material with an exquisite combination of properties like flexibility and durability. As the material is soft and flexible it offers great comfort and snug fit to the patient. Here are some more reasons why we consider Talon occlusal splints as the most preferred option-

  1. 1. No Leaching– There is no leaching of plasticizers from the splints into the oral cavity. This property ensures that the material does not undergo deterioration and guarantees longevity to the appliance.
  2. 2. Shape memory– The material has a property of shape memory which means that it can revert to its original shape even after undergoing plastic deformation.
  3. Enhanced retention– Talon occlusal splints become soft when immersed in warm water. This flexibility is extremely handy while inserting the splint in the patient’s mouth. During insertion, the softened splint flows into the undercuts thereby enhancing the retention of the appliance. As the material cools, it hardens to ensure a good fit. Talon occlusal splints eliminate the use of clasps for retention.
  4. Superior wear resistance– This material has high wear resistance similar to that of the hard acrylic surface.
  5. 5. Versatile– Another important feature of this material is that it has a wide range of utility. It can be used for any design of splints. Hence, it can be considered as an ideal treatment option for bruxism, orthodontic stabilization or TMJ dysfunction.
  6. No warping– There is almost negligible warping and the Talon occlusal splints maintain their flexibility for years together.

Talon thermoplastic material has been laboratory tested extensively and has yielded outstanding results. That is why it has become the most desirable choice of material for splint therapy. Being the leading Australian laboratory provider with high-end technology and top-notch quality service, Oceanic Dental Laboratory ensures to keep itself abreast with the latest innovations in the world of dentistry.

So, if you are looking for splints that fit comfortably and function hassle-free, Talon occlusal splints are all you need. Contact our experts at Oceanic Dental Laboratory to learn more.

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