First Impressions: March 2010

In First Impressions George Freedman, DDS, gives readers a brief summary of products that have recently been introduced to dentistry, based on his clinical experience.

Picasso Lite
AMD Lasers

Just when you thought that lasers could not get more affordable, AMD Lasers has announced the Picasso Lite soft-tissue dental laser. Specifically developed for soft-tissue treatment procedures, the Picasso Lite replaces other modalities of soft-tissue treatment effectively and economically. While it has a maximum power of 2.5 W (less than the 7 W of its precursor, the Picasso), it provides all of the power that is needed for most routine procedures. Most gingivoplasty, troughing an d coagulation soft-tissue procedures can be accomplished in the 1-W power range. Surgical procedures for excising soft tissues typically require power in the 2.5-W range. The Picasso Lite cuts, excises, shapes, and coagulates soft tissues with greatly reduced trauma, irritation, and necrosis of surface layers. It is indicated for gingivectomy, gingivoplasty, frenectomy, exposing implants and unerupted teeth, and treating aphthous ulcers and herpetic lesions, among others. It features a very compact, lightweight design and is provided with a setup DVD, online laser certification, accessories (safety goggles, a foot control, handpiece), an international power adapter, and the option of disposable tips or a low-cost strippable optic fiber. (While disposable tips are more convenient, the strippable fiber greatly reduces the per-procedure cost.) The Picasso Lite allows the practitioner to affordably provide a laser in every operatory, including the hygiene rooms, where permitted by regulatory bodies. Laser-assisted periodontal treatment is an exciting new treatment paradigm. The advantages to patients include less discomfort during and after procedures, rapid healing, and the availability of in-office surgical procedures avoiding trips to a specialist for selected treatments. Ultra-affordable and ultra-sleek, the Picasso Lite simplifies clinical dentistry for every dentist and hygienist.For more information, call (866) 999-2635 or visit the company Web site at

Filtek Supreme Ultra Universal Restorative

The practitioner’s main criteria for selecting composite restorative materials include color adaptability, color range, handling properties, and polishability. These are the properties that facilitate the placement of the restorative material into the patient’s tooth, the finishing process to the final shine and luster, and the durability that permits functional, as well as aesthetic, utilization the restoration for many years. 3M ESPE’s Filtek Supreme Ultra Universal Restorative has been recently introduced with improvements on the already high ratings of their currently offered restorative products. 3M ESPE’s bonded nanofiller technology has been enhanced to develop long-term polish retention. The translucent shades are more dentist-friendly in terms of viscosity, composite flow, and their ability to hold an intended shape when positioned on the tooth or cavity surface. The Supreme Ultra Universal Restorative’s marginal adaptation is excellent. The above properties often conflict, and require very minute adjustments in chemistry in order to optimize their attributes. Shade selection is very important in providing patients with the aesthetics that they require (and demand), and evaluate postoperatively chairside. The color-coding and label designs that are incorporated into the Supreme Ultra Universal Restorative system make finding the selected shade rapid, easy, and uncomplicated. The new restorative has a very ideal viscosity. It combines a lack of stickiness to the placement instrument with its ability to resist slumping during extended cosmetic procedures. The operator can use a brush for a surface characterization. The rapidity of the polishing process (and its cost in valuable chairside time) reflects on the efficiency of the restorative material. Filtek Supreme Ultra Universal Restorative is patient- and dentist-friendly and clinically versatile. For more information, call (800) 634-2249 or visit and

Case photos provided by Dr. Gabriel Krastl (University of Basel, Switzerland).

Contact Perfect
Arnel Dental Products

Interproximal contacts were never a problem with amalgam restorations. Composites are not so predictable. Moreover, most practitioners today do not place amalgams, and most patients will accept only composite (or similar) tooth-colored materials. This creates the dilemma of providing an aesthetic restoration that also has acceptable interproximal contacts. Many techniques and gadgets have been proposed to develop predictable interproximal contacts. Some actually work. Arnel Dental Products has introduced Contact Perfect, an innovative windows-based contact matrix that delivers predictable interproximal contacts every time. The Contact Perfect consists of a double-matrix system with windows and a retractable window covering. First, fold the window covering against the band, and then fold the band halves together. Burnish the folding points and lock the band in a Tofflemyre-type retainer. Secure the band around the tooth with the window aligned to the contact area. After etching and bonding, the first restorative step is an axial composite layer ramping away from the window (do not cover the window). Then place a bulk increment to beyond the contact area (do not cure at this stage). Pull out the window from between the band components (do not cure at this stage). Tap the resin once with a plugger (do not push on the resin), creating a definitive contact with the adjacent tooth (light-cure now). The proper tap is directed away from the marginal ridge and creates a dimpled surface. Fill the tap hole (or dimple) with composite resin and light-cure. Tighten the matrix retainer to separate the scored interproximal parts of the band and remove the halves buccally and lingually. Finish the restoration. Contact Perfect gives a perfect contact every time. For more information, call (877) 239-2840 or visit

Feather Light
Ultralight Optics

Illumination within the oral cavity is the key to successful dentistry. This is less of a problem for the younger dentist, but as the eyes age, adequate illumination becomes more difficult and more critical. Today’s exacting dental parameters, whether aesthetics, implants, endodontics, orthodontics, or a variety of other treatments, demand that the practitioner clearly see every detail. Since illumination is most often mounted on glasses, minimum weight is imperative. Ultralight Optics has introduced the Feather Light LED Loupe Light. Designed by a dentist and an ophthalmologist, it is the lightest and smallest LED illumination available to the practitioner. “Feather Light” indicates actual weight, 4 g, or 0.13 oz. (It is manufactured of aircraft aluminum.) Though small and very light, it provides a very bright 39,000-lux at 6000ºK color-corrected true white light with a 2.5-in spot size at 12 in. It mounts onto existing loupes or glasses without blocking the operator’s vision. The advanced lithium-ion battery pack has a high charge capacity and provides the longest lasting battery pack, 8 hours consistent brightness at the highest setting, offering an entire day on a single charge. In actual practice, the brightest setting is not used most of the time, extending the charge time even further. The illuminating diodes have a longevity of approximately 50,000 hours, while the 5 oz battery provides 400 to 700 charges and fits readily into a pocket or clips onto a belt, leaving the brightness adjustment control conveniently exposed. It not only mounts securely onto loupes but also typically fits onto the original loupes carrying case as well. The Feather Light delivers an intense beam of light and unsurpassed comfort. For more information, call (323) 316-4514 or visit the company Web site at

Dr. Freedman is a founder and past president of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, a co-founder of the Canadian Academy for Esthetic Dentistry, and a Diplomate of the American Board of Aesthetic Dentistry. He is a visiting professor at the Universita di Firenze, Florence, Italy. He is the Special Advisor of First Impressions and Buyers’ Guides for Dentistry Today. He is the author or co-author of 11 textbooks, more than 600 dental articles, and numerous Webinars and CDs, and is a Team Member of REALITY. He lectures internationally on dental aesthetics, adhesion, desensitization, composites, impression materials, and porcelain veneers. A graduate of McGill University in Montreal, Dr. Freedman maintains a private practice limited to aesthetic dentistry in Toronto. He can be reached at (905) 513-9191 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .