Sep 15, 2017 | By Benedict

Candid, a New York City-based dental startup, is offering FDA-approved, 3D printed aligners for those needing mild orthodontic work. The aligners cost $1,900 upfront, around a quarter the cost of popular dental solutions like Invisalign.

One of our favorite things about 3D printing is its ability to provide things that were once prohibitively expensive to normal people on normal salaries. You only have to look at the world of 3D printed prosthetics to see how cheap limb devices are changing the lives of the non-rich, and it looks like 3D printing in the dental industry could soon have a similar effect.

Because even though braces seem ubiquitous in the U.S. and many other countries, it’s easy to forget that these things cost serious money, and only those with spare cash or adequate dental plans can afford the privilege of such correctional procedures.

So how do you democratize nice teeth? One company has a plan.

Candid is a startup based in New York City that is using additive manufacturing technologies to produce (relatively) affordable dental aligners. At $1,900 up front, the 3D printed dental aids are cheaper than braces, which can cost up to $7,000, and newer solutions like Invisalign, which can fetch up to $8,000.

Targeted at those who need mild to moderate orthodontic work, Candid’s 3D printed aligners have been approved by the FDA, and could make straight teeth a more common sight amongst ordinary people.

Of course, at such a low price point, the aligners do require the patient to put in some legwork themselves! For example, Candid will send the customer a do-it-yourself tooth modeling kit which can be used at home. The tooth impressions gathered using this kit are sent back to Candid, who will then get to work making the aligners.

First, however, staff have to review the impressions to make sure everything is suitable for Candid’s solution. In North Carolina, there are special regulations that may make treatment impossible, while Candid’s team also needs to be sure that the case is only one of “mild to moderate” severity. Otherwise, the customer may need another form of professional help.

If everything looks okay, Candid will generate a 3D model of how the customer’s corrected teeth will look after alignment. If the customer is happy with the look of the new teeth, Candid will then 3D print the aligners and send them over along with a whitening solution.

The alignment process takes around five months, after which the customer will also need to wear a retainer at night to maintain the correction.

“By providing a lower-cost option, you increase accessibility for those who may not be able to afford the more expensive treatment or are unwilling to do something they may think is more cosmetic in nature,” Candid co-founder and CEO Nick Greenfield told TechCrunch.

“This is one of those areas that’s very untouched and seems to be unfairly focused on; if you’re rich you can get braces and if you’re poor, you can’t. We want to bring a solution that’s in-between.”

And if 3D printed orthodontics doesn’t put a smile on your face, what will?



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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Ater wrote at 9/17/2017 4:57:36 PM:

Does anyone know their website?

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