Dental Impressions – No More Gooey Trays

Dental Impressions - No More Gooey Trays

Digital Scanner – the latest in making dental impressions

We are very excited to tell our patients that we have done away with the gooey, gag inducing, painful, trays for dental impressions!  Since last summer we have had a new, state-of-the art digital impression system in our office.   If you come to see us for procedures such as a crown or Invisalign invisible braces, you will be introduced to the new iTero Element digital scanner!

iTero Element digital scanner

The iTero Element digital scanner.

The scanner captures digital images of your teeth and gums and gives us a 3D detailed model so that we can send your crown or Invisalign case to the lab.  From the digital model the lab has all the exact measurements it needs to make your crown or Invisalign aligners with precision.  Using this scanner not only replaces the unpleasant taste and the uncomfortable goo associated with using traditional impression trays, but also decreases turn around time by eliminating the need to ship those messy trays to a dental lab.

Today I want to show you what the iTero digital scanner looks like and how it works. In the next blog I will show you how I recently used it in my office on one of my patients, followed by some frequently asked questions.

What are the different parts of the iTero Element Digital Scanner?

Say we are taking your dental impressions with the digital scanner and you have to sneeze or cough.  No problem! We simply take out the wand until you are ready to proceed.  Sneezing, gagging or coughing in the middle of taking impressions the old way would likely require retaking those gooey impressions.  Here is what hand held wand looks like:

The iTero Element wand

This is the iTero Element wand that captures the 3D images.

Dr. Arredondo or one of our highly trained dental assistants uses the wand of the digital scanner to capture images of your tooth surfaces and gum tissue.   Another great feature of the scanner is that it doesn’t expose our patients to radiation like X-Rays do; it simply uses the light in the room and the wand to capture the images.

The next feature of the scanner is the screen.  This is where you can watch the scanning processes take place. As the wand scans through your mouth, the image shows up immediately on the screen as it is being built in real-time and eliminates the need to re-take a dental impression.

Last, we can see the final product of the iTero Element Scanner, the 3D model. This gives me (Dr. Arredondo) and the dental lab the ability to see how your teeth come together, to see your tooth structure, and how to best to treat your particular case. Whether it be a crown or Invisalign invisible braces for you or for your teen, the 3D model delivers precise information and looks something like this:

iTero Element 3D image.

The iTero Element screen that shows the 3D digital image.

Why does Dr. Arredondo prefer the digital scanner?


  • No gooey mess associated with impression materials
  • Breathe and swallow as you normally would
  • No unpleasant taste or smell


  • View 3D scans onscreen immediately
  • Faster delivery time for crowns, bridges, implant crowns and Invisalign® and Invisalign Teen® aligners


  • Allows for a precise fit of all laboratory created restorations like crowns and bridges as well as Invisalign clear aligners.
  • Eliminates the need to retake impressions

Say goodbye to the traditional gooey way of taking impressions and say hello to a more comfortable way of taking impressions.  I’ll leave you with an introductory video to the digital scanner below.  iTero Element scanner and our practice, working together to create a lasting first impression for you and your smile.


Recommended Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *