A dentist may install a crown or cap to restore a tooth’s function and shape. Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics or CEREC® is an increasingly popular crown option among dentists and patients.
How do CEREC® and traditional crowns differ?
Most dental crowns consist of metal, resin, ceramic, porcelain, or porcelain with metal. The placement of a traditional crown requires two visits to a dental office. First, the dentist drills away any decay before removing enough of the natural tooth to ensure that the overlaying crown does not protrude beyond the tooth line. The dentist then creates an impression of the teeth, which a lab uses to create a permanent crown. A traditional crown takes up to two weeks to make and may require several adjustments to ensure a proper fit before the dentist cements it into the mouth. Alternatively, dentists can create and place CEREC® crowns in patients’ mouths during a single dental visit.
How does a dentist make a same-day crown?
Preparing a tooth for a same-day crown is similar to preparing it for a traditional crown and requires the dentist to remove a portion of it with a drill. After that, the dentist creates a digital impression of a patient’s teeth using a sensitive scanning device. Next, the dentist feeds the images into a machine that uses computer-aided design and manufacturing software to create a digital blueprint. The dentist then sends these instructions to an on-site milling machine that uses them to carve the crown from a ceramic block within approximately 15 minutes. Finally, the dentist smooths the crown’s rough edges and confirms its color before placing it into the patient’s mouth.
What are the advantages of choosing CEREC®?
Same-day crowns offer numerous advantages for patients and dentists, making them an increasingly popular tooth restoration choice.
Choosing same-day crowns means patients do not wait weeks for an off-site lab to make a crown. Instead, tooth preparation, crown manufacturing, and placement in the mouth can occur within approximately two hours. As a result, individuals can enter a dentist’s office and leave with a permanent crown with a single appointment.
Patients who receive same-day crowns do not require multiple visits to a dental office for tooth preparation and crown placement. In addition, CEREC®technogy reduces the risk of a poorly-fitting crown that becomes problematic after a patient lives with it and requires additional dental appointments for adjustments. State-of-the-art software improves fit by guiding the crown’s creation, taking surrounding teeth and various oral positions into account.
Same-day crowns help dentists preserve more of a patient’s natural tooth. In addition, these crowns involve minimal removal of the underlying tooth. Therefore, recovery does not take as long as it might with traditional crowns, which also require temporary coverings and increase a tooth’s vulnerability during the crown production period.
Unnecessary standard impressions
Dentists often create impressions of patients’ upper and lower teeth that assist lab technicians who make dental prosthetics. However, the impression process requires patients to bite down on putty or cement-filled trays that many find uncomfortable and gag-inducing. With CEREC®, dentists take impressions digitally with a small inter-oral camera that is comfortable for the patient and offers better images for the dentist to study.
One of the most significant advantages of using computer-aided design and manufacturing technology is the precise fit, color, and shape dentists can achieve before securing the crown into a patient’s mouth. In addition, digital imaging technology allows the dentist and patient to see how the final crown will look in the patient’s mouth and make adjustments before the milling machine carves the final prosthetic.
No temporary crown
Anyone who chooses traditional crowns knows the frustration of having a temporary cap before receiving a permanent crown. A temporary crown is necessary to protect the underlying tooth from damage and decay and reduces painful sensitivity while eating and drinking before its permanent replacement is ready. However, dentists use a non-permanent adhesive to install temporary crowns to facilitate removing them. As a result, temporary tooth coverings tend to dislodge while chewing and contribute to patients’ discomfort, embarrassment, and inconvenience. Same-day crowns do not require individuals to wear a temporary cap because the dentist can manufacture and place them during one visit.
Crowns are a standard treatment for addressing the limitations and discomfort of various dental problems. CEREC® technology can reduce the time and frustration that accompanies traditional crowns by providing a fast and permanent solution that restores oral health, function, and appearance.
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