Whilst it’s been just over 70 years since dentures first became available on the NHS, some of the most significant advancements in removable dentures have occurred in the past 25 years. From developments in Dr Abe’s SEMCD (Suction Effective Mandibular Complete Dentures) technique to enhanced materials and perfected workflows, the evolution of dentures is an example of mankind’s ever-present desire to continuously evolve and improve.
However, with edentulous patients on the decline and a reluctance from some dental professionals to get involved in this complex discipline – exactly what role do dentures have in the modern-day dental clinic and how feasible is it as a treatment offering?
Over the past decade I’ve evolved my denture skills and business outlook from a dental technician to a CDT and a learner to an educator. My aim is to inspire and educate the next generation of dental professionals into becoming more competent, confident, and commercially minded in complete removable dentures.
The demand for private dentures is real.
After the recent Covid-19 pandemic, the profession experienced an increase in demand from patients turning to private dentistry and requesting more bespoke denture solutions. The opportunity here for clinicians, CDTs and dental technicians today is in recognising the need to upskill their denture know-how and invest in proven systems that can support them in meeting these demands.
Private dentures mean premium dentures. With that comes the freedom to be able to offer more treatment options, better quality materials, increased predictability, and ultimately greater patient satisfaction. Fundamentally, the patient is number one and they deserve more than just a ‘regular’ denture.
Premium dentures, proven predictability.
When it comes to high-end denture solutions, BPS dentures are the product of a proven workflow and effective cooperation between dentists and dental technicians. It offers a systematic, patient-centric approach that offers unsurpassed predictability - right from taking the first impression to finishing and polishing the final denture. Quite simply, what BPS allows us to achieve is, if you follow the tried and tested steps there really is very minimal room for error.
Any denture system that can stand the test time must be open to advancements. Over the past 25 years the BPS system has undergone extensive, research and development, right from its roots with the original Gnathomat, to the introduction of the BPS workflow in 1997, and Dr Jiro Abe’s SEMCD technique in 1999 to the most recent Ivotion Digital Denture System.
Quality over quantity.
Once you realise there is a client base out there ready and waiting to be serviced by the private high-end denture market, then it’s time to re-evaluate your business model - and my clinic is evidence of this. It’s not about volume and trying to service an abundance of free NHS dentures for very minimal return and satisfaction, but instead about delivering quality high-end dentures to fewer patients – and at a price you’re willing to charge and they’re willing to pay. By raising the bar you’re instantly inviting a new type of clientele.
In order to raise the bar in denture protocols, outside of the limited knowledge you gain at undergraduate level, you really need to be proactive in finding your own denture training and education. In the 3-years since going private, I’ve probably flown over 110 thousand miles in search for the right education trying to advance my own clinical and technical skills and know-how.
It’s this level of dedication that has given me the opportunity to become a dual certified Dr Jiro Abe SEMCD international clinical and Technical Instructor, as well as an approved Ivoclar BPS Denturist instructor. This has resulted in opening our training facility at the clinic and delivering a 3-day Masterclass around the BPS workflow and SEMCD technique. It gives me great satisfaction to see delegates by the end of day three, clinically treat and manufacture a set of dentures.
The art of dentures is well and truly alive and the demand for high-end bespoke dentures isn’t going away any time soon. Come see for yourself this October 21st - 22nd, as Ivoclar will be holding a 2-day ‘Masters of Removable Prosthetics’ event at the De Vere East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham, dedicated to celebrating the past, present and future developments of the BPS (Bio-functional Prosthetic System) workflow.
It’s here that, together with my colleague Dental Technician József Rátonyi, we will be joining forces to present ‘The Evolution of the BPS SEMCD’, discussing our experiences, challenges, and ambitions in removable prosthetics, as we continue to develop and finetune the BPS & SEMCD workflow for the ultimate benefit of the clinician, technician, CDT and patient alike.
To book your place on the Ivoclar ‘Masters of Removable Prosthetics’ 2-day event in Nottingham this October click here. Tickets for the 2-day and evening event are available for £295+ vat per person. Hotel accommodation can also be booked for one night at £72+vat.