Sleeping Girl Domenico Fetti

10% of the population has sleep bruxism. Many find relief with a custom night guard. Get your own custom night guard for $130.

Sleeping Girl Domenicao Fetti
“Sleeping Girl” Domenico Fetti (c. 1589 – 1623)

Marketing Collateral

Linked below is the handout I made for the Yankee Dental Congress. It uses the Metatooth logo (source code) and is split between my twin aims. I’ve been working on both of them. Nothing I can hang my hat on as yet, but progress on each.

I first submitted an online order to Staples(r) for 25 copies. There was some communication problem, so I re-order at Store #0217. Feeling confident, I upped it to 50 copies (100 handouts). I think I managed to pass out 5 at the event itself. Two months later, just under half remain.

Thanks for reading. Tell me about your market optimism in the comments!




It’s a bit ironic that I spend so much time with JavaScript right now. My first programming gig was with JavaScript. It was the spring of 2000. I was placed by an agency at an office near Alewife. I walked to Central, took the T to Harvard, got off, bought the “Rhino” book at the Harvard Book Store, got back on, and read the book until Alewife. I walked into the office and started coding. The company published training materials. A colleague (worker?) in the office said about 11am, “Hey, you need to take your eyes off the screen every now and then!”.

It was a bit of a disaster but I delivered the software they needed. I even partook of a company-provided yoga class. I ran into the co-worker a few years hence, and he claimed they still used the software I developed!

Your code is not temporary. Tell me about it in the comments.


Custom night guard survey results

Custom night guard survey results are in! The survey ran from Feb 15 – Mar 15, 2019. Sign up to the e-mail list to learn more about this survey.

Custom night guard survey results.
What could be improved about your custom night guard?

Are you a night guard user? Order your impression kit for a custom night guard today.

1. How often do you replace your night guard?
Every couple years19%
Once a year19%
2. Where did you go for a new one?
My dentist75%
Online shop13%
3. What did you enjoy about it?
The fit71%
The price36%
The fitting process14%
4. What could be improved?
Better fit31%
The price69%
Convenient fitting process31%
Easier to replace38%
5. How much did you pay for your night guard?
< $10031%
> $20063%
The take away

User needs an at-home impression kit. Availability of a replacement night guard on short-notice is appreciated. There are few options in the $100-$200 price range.

Thanks for checking out the custom night guard survey results. Did you come to a different conclusion? Tell me about it in the comments.


Night guard market research

Bumping up this topic on night guard market research.  The survey is still open.  Are you a night guard user?  Please spare a few moments to answer the questions about your experience.

A funny thing happened as I worked on SEO last week.  I found a direct-to-consumer night guard that is using up-to-the-moment marketing practices.  It’s called Cheeky and it has a strong website and Instagram presence. The technology stack includes Shopify & the branding is just great.

Cheeky Website

It’s a subscription model, which has market traction.  How do I know this? I’ve done night guard market research. Take the survey! Results will be posted March 15th.


Smile Direct Club has a 3D Plan

My “Smile Transformation” 3D plan from Smile Direct Club is here! The e-mail arrived within 24 hours after I left their office.  Clicking through brought me to a 3D rendering of my current and planned tooth positions.  Very simple interface and looks slick.

All in JavaScript!

Ortho seems to be leading the way with the use of web technologies. Practice Management Software has been shifting to hosted services for some time (also known as, Software-as-a-Service). All other specialties are mired in the desktop. Do you agree?  Please share your thoughts in the comments.


Impression of Smile Direct Club

I was 3D scanned at Smile Direct Club’s Boston location yesterday. They use a WeWork location at 745 Atlantic Ave.  I checked in on the 8th floor, waited for a bit, then down to their offices on the 2nd floor.


I had to reschedule it a few days ago, the online scheduler was super-easy to use. They had 4 rooms for impressions and one general office space. It was cramped but clean and orderly.

The SmileGuide described the entire process and explained all the contents of the box of aligners you receive. I asked a lot of questions, which the SmileGuide — who was a Certified Dental Assistant — happily answered. To be clear, the SmileShop is not a clinic and I am not a patient, just a customer. If I were to reference an HBR article, this company’s value stream is customer service.

Believe it or not, this was my first digital impression.  Imaging started with photos of my upper & lower arches and in occlusion.  Then onto the 3D scan. At this location, they used an iTero Element. — I once met the guy who came up with “iTero”. Before that, I met the guy who created the technology! —   I didn’t time the process, but it was over in minutes. There was no spittoon or bib. It was a not a dental office. The arch scans automatically processed on screen and then shown  in color.  I brought along a USB stick in the hopes of getting my scans, but no luck.  I will follow-up with the central office.

It made me grin to see Invisalign options on the scanner interface.  Align Technology might not like competition to Invisalign, but has to like the equipment sales. There are 6 locations in Massachusetts and it sounds like there are more to come.

I went in knowing the cost:  $1,850 up front, or a payment plan that totals $2,170 over 2 years. I did not commit.  I left with a *nice* canvas bag and an at-home tooth whitener system.  If you skip the trays, you may buy more of the tooth whitener goop.

I asked, but could not receive, a copy of my scans at that time.  There should be a way for customers to receive their scan data.  Mail the customer a USB stick, or e-mail a download link.

The rap on aligners is they don’t work for teenagers. The reason being: compliance.  A $3,500 discount over braces huge.  Can you ensure your child will wear them 22 hours a day?

The scanner! I think this was a v1 iTero Element. The software was top-notch. I watched the data collect onscreen.  Whoever figured out how to display the scan in-process should win an award. Oh snap, they did!

Have you been to a SmileShop? What do you think about at-home orthodontics? Tell me about it in the comments. Thanks!


Night Guard Market

Hello and welcome back from Chicago or where ever you spent February Break.  Since December, I have been working as a technology consultant to dental companies, which in practice means contract software development.  It’s good work, I hope to share more about it soon. Until then, I am conducting a night guard market survey.

One analysis puts the US market for sleeping bruxism at $211 million [1].  Price for night guards vary, but one made from a dental impression sells for $80-$170 on e-shops including Amazon. Dentists charge upwards of $500 for this product. One-eighth of the population suffers from sleeping bruxism [2]. A night guard does not cure sleeping bruxism, but it does reduce the effect of night grinding.

custom night guard
A 3d-printed, custom, night guard.

I’ve been seeing a lot of promoted content on Instagram from SmileDirectClub, Candid Co., and Bytes.  Why not night guards? I’ve found four companies selling night guards direct-to-consumers, one in the UK.  So far, I haven’t seen promoted content from these companies, but many of them use Google Ads.

Do consumers desire another option for a custom night guard? What is lacking in the current offerings?  To help answer these questions about the night guard market, please take the survey. I will share the results on March 15th.

What do you think will be the most desired improvement? Share your thoughts in the comments.

  1. Sleeping Bruxism Treatment Market Research Report –Global Forecast to 2023. Market Research Future. July, 2018. Accessed 2019-01-04.
  2. Bruxism. Wikipedia. 18 February 2019, at 19:23 (UTC). Accessed 2019-02-25.

high-volume custom designed manufacturing in the news

Check out this report from WCVB on the Atlantis concept from Dentsply Sirona Implants. Do you need to produce over 1,000 custom designed products a day?  Sign up or contact us to find out more.


Can you spare a few moments to take my survey?

Please take the survey titled “Metatooth Nightguard”. Your feedback is helpful! Thank you.