Case Study – Wearside Orthodontic Centre



Sunderland-based specialist orthodontic practice, Wearside Orthodontic Centre, was looking for a solution to the problem of stockpiling thousands of sets of patients’ plaster study models.

An announcement at the British Orthodontic Conference in Manchester in 2014 meant that it was now a necessity to submit all study models to the board in digital format only. Following this, practice manager Julie Spurs took the decision to look at the possibility of moving her plaster study models into digital format. Wearside Orthodontic Centre was looking for a solution that would save on time and money and would cause the least amount of disruption and expenditure for the practice.

After a discussion with practice principles Callum Rushforth and Simon Lovel, it was decided that offering patients the benefits of digital models was in keeping with the company’s values of providing the very best orthodontic treatments possible and briefed Ashford Orthodontics to provide this service.


Ashford Orthodontics worked alongside Wearside Orthodontic Centre to create 3D digital records of the dentition of each of its patients’.

By working with both the original gypsum models and final dentition alginate impressions, Ashford Orthodontics created 3D scans of each of their patients and converted them to 3D digital study models, allowing Wearside to save the digital files into their patients’ records.


The result was that the new virtual storage of the study models significantly saved space at Wearside Orthodontic Centre and now allows models of the patients’ mouths to be 3D printed by Ashford Orthodontics for any replacement appliances that may be needed.

Furthermore, the digital study models offered by Ashford Orthodontics have a financial benefit to Wearside Orthodontic Centre also, as the digital models are now less expensive than the older plaster models.

Ashford Orthodontics offered an additional advantage for Wearside as the digital 3D images can be transferred to handheld devices and taken to various treatment rooms in the practice, allowing clinical staff the opportunity to discuss virtual records of the patients’ teeth from any angle, with the images being totally maneuverable on the screen via touch control.

Julie Spurs commented: “We have been considering switching for some time now, but we imagined that it would be tedious, expensive and time consuming to make this happen, but Ashford Orthodontics made switching really easy and without any expensive outlay either! We have always provided the very best for our patients by offering the very latest in Orthodontic techniques and ‘going digital’ with Ashford Orthodontics definitely ticked all the boxes for us.”