untreated dental problems tax our health care system. More than a million Americans a year show up at hospital emergency rooms with nontraumatic dental problems—costing more than $1 billion annually. In Minnesota, about 400,000 preschoolers were brought to hospital emergency rooms with severe oral conditions during a recent five-year period. The visits cost $80 million, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported last year.

Dentists have become a significant source of opioid prescribing — especially for younger patients undergoing wisdom teeth extractions. They prescribe about 8 percent of the opioids in this country, ... but are the top prescribers of these drugs to adolescents, accounting for 31 percent of all opioids given to patients aged 10 to 19 years old. That’s particularly concerning because that age group is among the most likely to abuse drugs and develop addictions.

Forget the idea of hobbyists printing off small plastic trinkets at home. Industrial 3D printers, which can cost up to $1m, are changing manufacturing...Compared with the $70 billion machine-tool market, additive manufacturing is still tiny. But it is expanding rapidly, and not just in health care. Overall, Wohlers estimates that 3D-printed products and services grew by 26% last year, to be worth nearly $5.2 billion.