For many years we have been taking shades remotely via Skype and, more recently, Zoom internet services (handles listed at bottom of this page). This is a great way of adding to the patient’s customer service experience by affording the opportunity to meet the person responsible for the fabrication of their purchase with you in person. It is nice for any of us to know that someone cares, especially with such an important item as a front tooth.
There a few items required for remote shade taking. Below is a checklist:
If using a PC:
Suggested webcam: Logitech c922 Pro or above; and
USB extension cable and tripod.
If using a smartphone (using the rear camera):
Samsung Galaxy s8 or above; or
iPhone 9 or above; or
Equivalent model Google Pixel or other premium phone.
VITA 3D Master shade guide, including bleach shades OM1, OM2 and OM3 (sold by Henry Schein Halas)
VITA Classical shade guide (sold by Henry Schein Halas)
Ivoclar bleach shade guide (BL1-4) (sold by Ivoclar Vivadent Australia)
Celtra Ceram Gum shade guide (sold by Dentsply Sirona) or VITA Gum shade guide (sold by Henry Schein Halas)
VITA effect enamel guide (great to have but not as important)
Smartphone or DSLR for follow-up images
Lighting is critical with shade taking. As such, we need to use natural daylight and avoid harsh surgery lights and/or the amber glow of tungsten filaments overhead. Having the patient sitting up, near to and facing a window is ideal. Direct sunlight on the subject should however be avoided.
It is a good idea to test this set-up along with the internet connection with us prior to the appointment with the patient to iron-out any potential technical issues. This is also a good opportunity to explain the process without the patient being present. Chris will endeavour to teach shade taking as it is done for the purposes of streamlining the process for future appointments.
It is important to understand that there are variables in the way software and monitors show colour and value. As such, the process of remote shade taking is the ceramist guiding the professionals in the practice. The best information is that of the people in the room.
The ceramist will have the experience to steer the process to get the result. For example, it may appear that the shade tab is too high or low in value, then it will be suggested to try a particular tab. The it may be that the tab lacks warmth, then it will be suggested to try another tab, and so on. All the while moving from section-to-section of a facial plane. It can be an interesting and informative process for those new to shade taking. After the appointment, we ask that you take follow-up photos for us to work with to ensure aesthetic accuracy. Please refer to the tab above called Patient Photos for further details.
If you are unsure of anything discussed here, please do not hesitate to contact us for further explanation.