Has technology evolved to the point that the ceramic artist is obsolete or is it still possible for the artist to survive and thrive in today’s world? Technology (eg, CAD/CAM) has significantly impacted dentistry to the point that much of the ceramic processes in fabricating a restoration can be done by computerized machining and rapid prototyping technologies. The number of options available to practitioners is almost overwhelming. This presentation covers the current technologies and ideas on how to best incorporate technology and the human artistic touch into a high-end ceramic result for the patient. Clinical and ceramic tips and tricks for working with these new ceramic systems and technologies are also discussed.
Edward A. McLaren, DDS, is the director for the Center for Esthetic Dentistry at the University of California in Los Angeles, and the founder and director of the UCLA Master Dental Ceramist program. He maintains a private practice limited to prosthodontics and esthetic dentistry for which he does all of his own ceramics. Dr McLaren also serves as associate professor of biomaterials and advanced prosthodontics at UCLA and as adjunct assistant professor for the University of Oregon Dental School in Portland, Oregon. He is a board member and consultant for Clinical Research Associates; the lab section editor for Inside Dentistry; technoclinical editor for Spectrum Dialogue; and serves on the editorial review boards of Practical Procedures and Aesthetic Dentistry and Contemporary Esthetics. He currently performs ongoing clinical research on various restorative systems and has presented numerous lectures, hands-on clinics, and postgraduate courses on ceramics and esthetics to audiences around the world.