Impression Kit or 3D Scan – Which should you choose?

Even though making your own dental impressions at home is a piece of cake, some prefer to have their dental impressions taken by a dental professional in case they get them wrong. That’s why we now offer the option for those who can travel to London to have a 3D intraoral scan as an alternative option to the SmileBox™ impression kit. But when it comes to an impression kit or 3D scan, which is the better option? What is the difference between a 3D scan and an impression kit and will it affect your results? If you’ve been asking yourself these questions, keep reading to get the answers you’re looking for.

#1 Impression Kit or 3D Scan – The Basics

Before we go into the pros and cons of each method, let’s answer the following questions:

  1. What’s an impression kit?

An impression kit contains everything you need to make dental impressions, which are moulds of your teeth, made by biting into a mixture of putties that harden rapidly. The moulds are then scanned and digitised in order to create a digital copy of your teeth, which is used to create a treatment plan for any dental treatment – teeth straightening, for example. This method has been used for many decades and has proven itself highly effective. Using our SmileBox™ at home impression kit, you can now make your own dental moulds in the comfort of your home following the guided tutorial.

  1. What’s s a 3D scan?

A 3D scan, also known as a digital or intraoral scan, is the technological advancement of the regular dental impression. Using an innovative scanning device, your dental structure is captured and immediately digitised. Then, it can be forwarded directly to the orthodontist in charge of creating your treatment plan. By collaborating with a state of the art scanning facility in central London, our users can now easily have a 3D scan made for them. 

#2 The pros and cons of an impression kit

As mentioned before, dental impressions made with a specialised, fast-setting putty have stood the test of time and are used by dental professionals all over the world to capture accurate moulds of their patient’s teeth. Here are the advantages of choosing this method:

  • With Straight Teeth Direct™, you can now even take accurate dental impressions in the comfort of your own home. We have innovated to make the impression kit as simple and hassle-free as possible, with everything you need delivered right to your door by express shipping. If you were to visit a dentist for this step, you would have to wait weeks to get an appointment, possibly taking time off work just to get started with your smile transformation. 
  • In total, the SmileBox™ home impression kit includes everything required to take 6 dental impressions: 3 of your top arch, 3 of your lower arch. It comes with a handy impression manual to guide you through the process, as well as the support of the clinical team. After taking your first two impressions, snap a picture of each and send them through your secure app account, where you will receive feedback from a dentist on how to take the next 4.
  • Some might ask: what if I do my impressions wrong? Not to worry, even dentists have to retake impressions! The good thing about the at-home kit is that you have the additional guarantee of a second (or more), personalised impression kit in case you need to retake them – free of charge!

SmileBox Impression Kit or 3D Scan

As we can see, it’s a safe and easy way to capture great measurements of your teeth. What about the down sides? Well, about 20% of users need to retake their impressions, which, although is free of charge, requires further back and forth. Lastly, some users just don’t like the idea of doing this step by themselves, which is where the 3D scan option comes in handy…

#3 The pros and cons of a 3D scan

What are the advantages of the 3D scan method? Let’s dive right in:

  • Unlike the at home impression kit, a 3D scan ensures 100% accuracy the very first time (if done by an experienced professional). This means there will be no need to redo the scan or take second impressions, which is very handy if you lead a busy lifestyle.
  • The process is quick and easy, taking less than 20 minutes for the one off visit.
  • Contrary to dental moulds, the 3D scan doesn’t need to be posted and digitised – it’s simply forwarded directly from the scanning facility to our lab. This way, your orthodontist can get straight to work creating your treatment plan, speeding up the process.

Impression Kit or 3D Scan

As you may have guessed, 3D scans can only be taken using highly specialised equipment at a dedicated facility. Unfortunately, that means going on a one-off trip to central London, which can be inconvenient if you cannot free yourself up during standard opening hours. 

#4 Impression Kit or 3D Scan – Which to choose?

In the end, it comes down to what’s most practical for you. The great thing is that both options cost the same: only £42 / 47€ / 510kr. This way, you can focus entirely on which option you feel most comfortable with and won’t risk making an uncomfortable decision based on price.
If you don’t mind spending a little time on making your own impressions when it suits your schedule, the home impression kit is certainly a great option with an easy-to-follow process. If you’re heading into London and can spare some time, the 3D scan is a quick way to get your digital impression, accuracy guaranteed the first time around. Both options are 100% safe and will give you the same results in the end: straighter teeth and a confident smile!

We hope we covered everything there is to know about the at home impression kit or 3D scan. If you’ve decided which option you want to go for, simply head over to your secure account and select either [ORDER SMILEBOX] or [BOOK 3D SCAN] in the Status tab.
Don’t have an account yet? To find out if you’re eligible for this innovative and affordable teeth straightening method, simply complete your free e-consultation and receive a personal dentist’s evaluation within 24 hours! 

Not sure if this is for you? Read this first to learn more