One-day crown technology is convenient and produces durable ceramic crowns. Dentists now know that with digital technology, they can make a crown in the office while a patient waits, and that the process takes only an hour or two.
A crown is a cap made to cover a damaged tooth. To prepare for the crown, dentists drill to remove the decayed portion and shape the tooth for the crown. Depending on the dentist and location, a traditional crown can cost $800 to $2,000, and take at least two visits and a wait in between while a lab makes the crown. The CEREC systems, which cost dentists about $100,000 to $130,000, include a computer that takes digital images of the damaged tooth, software to design the crown, and a milling machine.
The process starts with the dentist using a wand with a camera on the end that uses reflected light to create a three-dimensional picture of the tooth and adjacent teeth. The software suggests a design for the crown, which the dentist can tweak. A mouse click sends the design to the milling machine, which sculpts the tooth from a small block of ceramic.
Teeth aren’t a single color, dentists say, but yellowish at the gumline with gradually changing color until they become nearly translucent. In the one-day process, dentists can simulate this effect by painting on colors with tiny brushes. (wsj.com)
It is important to note that dentists normally don’t charge more for a one-day crown than a traditional crown partly because the machine saves on lab costs. CEREC crowns are generally covered by dental insurance that covers traditional crowns.
Several studies show restorations made using the computer-assisted systems fit well and have good longevity, particularly compared to lab-made crowns made in dentists’ office. (wsj.com)
The Benifits of CEREC Crowns
The History of the CEREC System
The History of the CEREC System pt 2
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