Tokuyama: Advancing Composite Restorations Through R&D
Tokuyama began almost 95 years ago as a diversified chemical producer. Over the years, the company has expanded its product range to include a number of specialized chemicals, including a vast array of dental products. Estelite Omega™ spherically filled supra-nano composite is just one of many dental materials Tokuyama produces, and, according to Phil Pasit, Director of Marketing, it was developed like every other innovative product manufactured by the company—with research and thorough clinical studies.
“Understanding our customers’ needs and investing resources in research and development has always been Tokuyama’s approach to creating innovative products that clinicians desire,” says Pasit. “It is the most efficient way to ensure that we are producing products needed by clinicians and that are the best for patient care.”
Pasit says that clinicians have been searching for a composite that is able to create either a polychromatic or monochromatic restoration using less shades and a simplified layering technique. He also believes that clinicians pay particular attention to technical specifications, such as filler size, handling, polishability, wear, and the composite’s opacity. “Light diffusion/refraction is a variable that has a huge impact on the advances made in recent generations of composites. Clinicians are looking to create an “invisible restoration” that emulates a natural tooth, says Pasit.
Tokuyama’s Estelite Omega is unique in that it is comprised of proprietary spherical fillers, which are supra-nano in classification and measure about 200 nanometers across. Estelite Omega has a shrinkage rate of only 1.3%, which, according to Pasit, makes it one of the lowest shrink composites on the market.
Pasit notes that Estelite Omega is not only an excellent composite in terms of performance, but also in esthetics. “Estelite Omega caters to clinicians that desire the re-creation of natural beauty using colors that mimic true dentition, enamel, and other portions of the tooth,” he says. Using less than a dozen shades, Estelite Omega allows clinicians to control hue, chroma, and value to achieve a natural effect. “Our studies have shown that the spherical fillers maintain high-gloss retention and provide life-like opalescence by diffusing and refracting light. This allows for superior blending of the margins without generating any noticeable demarcations, creating very natural-looking restorations,” says Pasit.
Estelite Omega also features Tokuyama’s Rapid Amplified Photopolymerization (RAP) technology. RAP technology increases Estelite Omega’s working time under ambient light by 90 seconds, as well as reduces curing time by one-third. Pasit says that the extra working time allows clinicians to master the anatomy, without the composite handling changing under ambient light.
Tokuyama’s dedication to creating first-rate composites with high levels of esthetics expands beyond its composite offerings. Throughout 2012, the company will be hosting a lecture and workshop series by leading clinicians widely known for using simple techniques to create natural beauty. Pasit says that this lecture series allows clinicians to perfect their restoration techniques without having to learn complex systems.
According to Pasit, every clinician has their own preference when it comes to composites. “Some are looking for the one-size-fits-all composite, while others are looking for the elite composite that allows them to be the Michelangelo in their field. With either preferred method, Tokuyama has a solution to fit both needs.”
“Our customers’ voices are instrumental in shaping our research and development pipeline. So as clinicians voice their business concerns, Tokuyama will be sure to address them with products that truly differentiate us from the competition,” Pasit concludes.
Tokuyama Dental America Inc.
740 Garden View Court, Suite 200
Encinitas, CA 92024