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Dental Work Goes Digital With 3D Printing Devices

CNN -- For those over the age of 55, dentures are still a reality, and for some a big inconvenience.
CNN -- For those over the age of 55, dentures are still a reality, and for some a big inconvenience.

However, with new dental technology, many younger people will never know what it's like to have dentures, thanks to a new procedure.

With the birth of a new grandchild, Charlie Thrush has a lot to be happy about. And that's a good thing because he also has a brand new smile.

At age 18 Charlie had a serious gum disease, called a Pyria that caused him to lose his teeth. For over 50 years he has worn dentures, which have had their drawbacks.

"I was having problems with them,” he says. “Staying in my mouth number one."

Then Charlie heard about a digital imaging procedure that makes precise dentures through measurements programmed into a computer.

The computer makes a 3D image model that is used to make the dentures. The fit is more exact, which mean less slipping. The dentures are more natural and provide other health benefits.

"You have less sore spots, and with the better fit dentures you have less bone loss,” Dr. Youssef Obeid, from Obeid Dental, says. “You have fewer adherences of bacteria to the dentures, and less denture smell."

And because fitting only requires two visits, it also means less time at the doctor's office. And that's just fine with Charlie who would rather be with his granddaughter than in a dentist chair.

"Everybody who looks at me says I have beautiful teeth,” says Charlie. “I don't tell them they're false. I say, thank you."

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