We can think of a few things you would probably rather do than spend the afternoon at your dentist’s office. Thanks to Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics (CEREC), it’s possible for your dentist to detect a cavity and protect your tooth with a long-lasting crown all in one visit. What is a CEREC crown? Dentists make and place these custom crowns in one visit using 3D photography and computer-aided design (CAD) software.
What Is a CEREC Crown?
About CEREC Crowns
In 1980, Werner H. Moörmann worked with Electrical Engineer Marco Brandestini to construct the first CEREC crown (source). Over the past few decades, these crowns have come a long way and are successfully used for several purposes:
- To restore the size or shape of a damaged tooth
- To cover a discolored or misshapen tooth
- To strengthen a weak tooth
- To cover an implant, root canal, or anchor teeth that support a bridge
Using 3D photography and computer-aided design (CAD) software, your dentist can design custom crowns that perfectly match your bite and surrounding teeth. After your dentist completes the blueprint design, a computer-controlled milling machine creates a physical crown from a single block of ceramic or resin. The process only takes a few minutes, and once your dentist bonds it to your tooth, you’ll have a metal-free and long-lasting dental restoration in just one office visit.
Traditional Crowns vs. CEREC Crowns
Just in case you’ve never had a traditional crown placed (or if it’s been awhile), here’s an overview of what the process typically looks like:
- First Visit: Your dentist will diagnose your cavity using an x-ray or examination.
- First or Second Visit: Next, you’ll receive an impression of your original tooth, and your dentist will begin removing the decay. Then, your dental hygienist or another staff member will place a temporary crown. Depending on your dentist’s schedule, this might happen during your first visit.
- Second or Third Visit: Sometimes traditional custom crowns can take up to two weeks for a lab technician to create. Once the crown is complete, you’ll go in for another visit and hopefully have the crown placed. Sometimes, your dentist will file the custom crown to make sure it fits correctly with your bite.
- Third or Fourth Visit: If the custom crown is too small, your dentist might send it back to the lab for an additional coat of glaze. When this occurs, you will probably have to come in again for a third or fourth visit.
CEREC crowns, on the other hand, can often be placed in one visit. You’ll walk out of your dentist’s office the same day with a sturdy crown that blends in with your natural teeth.
Benefits of CEREC Crowns
Aside from convenience, there are several other benefits of CEREC crowns. Since these crowns are made from one solid piece, they are typically stronger than traditional crowns. You’ll also get to skip out on the uncomfortable process of having impressions made (a big perk if you have a bad gag reflex). CEREC crowns will match your natural tooth color as well, and you won’t see a metal line near your gumline like you would with a traditional crown.
What is a CEREC crown? It’s a strong crown that certain dentists can make in a matter of minutes using CAD software. If you’re looking for an experienced and friendly dentist in southwest Missouri who specializes in CEREC crowns, visit Duff Family Dental. Make an appointment by calling us at 417-501-8601 or contact us online today! We look forward to helping you keep your teeth in the best shape possible.