Hands-on with Master Dental Technician Stefan Picha at the Jensen Education Day

Live in Chicago: “from red to white”

Without red aesthetics there can be no white aesthetics and vice versa: At the “Jensen Education Day 2014”, held in mid-February in Chicago, master dental technicians Stefan Picha and Patrick Boche from Creation Willi Geller International demonstrated how easily and reliably Creation CC and Creation ZI-CT can be used with corresponding gingival shades to create lifelike “from red to white” ceramic restorations.

Implant specialist Picha, who frequently layers complex gingival restorations at his practice in Furth, Bavaria, demonstrated in Chicago an individual gingival layering on an anterior bridge from 3 to 3. In his slight Frankish accent, Picha presented Creation’s new high-fusing zirconium veneering ceramic, gave detailed information on his personal approach and answered questions on topics including the firing procedure and heating and cooling periods. He had even prepared an informative flyer for the attendees to take away and read later.

His assessment: “I find Creation ZI-CT extremely easy to work with. The ceramic is even better than the classic Creation CC as its colours are more compact and somewhat more saturated. This is certainly one of the reasons why many colleagues, who had not previously worked with Creation, have now changed their minds and ordered “Crystal Type”. I’m still very much impressed by how the product handles and its material characteristics.”



Stefan Picha on the Jensen Education Day in Chicago:

“Safety in using zirconium ceramics is growing and there are barely any boundaries on what can be achieved aesthetically”

Exciting talks, practical demonstrations, and many new perspectives and ideas from renowned dental technicians: The Jensen Education Day takes place alongside the Chicago Midwinter Meeting each year and is a favourite training event for dental technicians from the world over. Last year, Stefan Picha was just one of the crowd. However, this year he was the one sitting behind the demonstration table and showing his colleagues his approach for individual gingival layering with Creation ZI-CT. Marion Guntzel spoke with the likeable master dental technician from Furth about his impressions of his time in Chicago.


Mr Picha, what do you think the best thing is about the Jensen Education Day?

Distinguished dental technicians offer a great amount of knowledge and experience in a single day. At the same time you meet many fellow dental technicians from a huge variety of countries, about whom you have either already read a great deal or with whom you have already communicated by e-mail or on Facebook. It’s an unbelievably motivating and warm atmosphere.

It is also very interesting for a dental technician from Germany to see how things are presented in America. There are significant differences between German or European and American speakers. The Americans put on much more of a show. For example, in the presentation given by Dr. Edward McLaren, a Star Wars spaceship landed. That was really impressive – just like a scene from a Hollywood film. Dr. McLaren was literally acting “in the name of tooth preservation” (laughs). Nevertheless, the content of his talk was also impressive.


Which topics stood out this year? Which trends, materials and techniques were discussed on the sidelines?

The slump in the precious metal market and its consequences as well as, yet again, the opportunities and risks of CAD/CAM technology were the most common topics. In my view there is a trend heading towards full ceramics and away from the precious metal technology, which is being used less and less in practices. This is certainly also due to the fact that we are learning more and more about the ceramic zirconium dioxide material, about its possibilities and its restrictions, which mean we can better prevent chipping. This is where the new high-fusing ceramics such as Creation ZI-CT come into play most of all. They have a very high resistance which increases safety in zirconium ceramic technology. It also increases the opportunities for creative dental technicians as there are barely any boundaries on what can be achieved aesthetically.


Are there differences between American and European demands for individual aesthetics?

No. Fundamentally, there is, both in America and at home, a high and a somewhat less high aesthetic demand for dental prostheses. There are probably differences in the percentage distribution; this means the general public in America are, in terms of quality, slightly worse positioned than in Europe. The market everywhere is split in two: One person will buy pre-packaged products in the supermarket while the other can and wants to afford individual brand-name products. Therefore, there will always be dental technicians for the general public while others choose the creative path and try to implement the high aesthetic demands of their patients.


What was your personal highlight in Chicago?

I enjoyed the talk given by Walter Gebhard most of all. I find that he has a unique way of dealing with people. His ideas and suggestions are aimed at small practices that want to maintain a personal relationship with their patients. It is becoming more and more difficult to advise, manage and satisfy the aesthetic wishes of well-informed and self-conscious patients. Walter Gebhard gave a very inspiring talk about how he deals with such patients and introduces them to new ideas such as temporary measures.

I was also impressed by how he has been implementing this successful partnership approach between patient and dental technician for decades. His concept is simple and clear and he gave his talk without any show elements, which is somewhat unusual for America. However, he impressed everyone in Chicago and gave them something to think about.


You next talk is in mid-May at the “Dental Technology with Passion” colloquium organised by Creation. What are you going to present in Berlin?

I’m going to explain, using the cases of different patients, how structures lost as part of complex implant work can be aesthetically and functionally restored using the special Creation ZI-CT gingival shades. In Berlin I want to show what can and cannot be done as part of gingival restorations. For example, firing a ceramic three or four times is the absolute limit as far as aesthetics are concerned as the ceramic then starts to turn grey and becomes more translucent, as is the case with Creation CC. When I am planning on carrying out a gingival layering procedure on the entire upper jaw, as a dental technician I have to carefully consider when I’m going to do what, in which firing, and which layers I’m going to do together or in which order I’m going to do them. This will be the subject of my talk.

I want my colleagues who believe that upper or lower jaw restorations can be easily and quickly accomplished with gingival material, to realise the following: Without a targeted plan and agreement of all those involved, such complex work cannot be successful.


Mr Picha, thank you for talking to us and we wish you all the best!