Cerec has been an incredible advancement in dentistry. We can now make crowns, inlays, onlays, veneers and some bridges and implant crowns in a single visit. This means fewer trips to the dentist, no more gooey impressions, and no more plastic temporaries that can come off or cause sensitivity.
What are all these things and why would you need one? Crowns or “caps” are used to restore a tooth when it is cracked, broken, has had a root canal or does not have enough healthy tooth structure to support a filling.
Sometimes instead of a full coverage crown a partial crown called an onlay can be used. This follows the same basic principles and procedures; however, less tooth structure is removed to preserve as much healthy tooth as possible.
We can utilize Cerec technology to make ceramic inlays instead of conventional composite tooth colored fillings. When a filling is small it holds up pretty well with composite, however when fillings become large it puts more stress on the remaining natural tooth structure and can lead to long term fracturing. Ceramic inlays are a much stronger material than composite and are bonded in place thus increasing the strength of the tooth.
Bridges are typically used to replace a single missing tooth. Although they can be used to replace more than one tooth, it will be up to the dentist to decide if the surrounding teeth and bone are going to be able to support the new teeth. Bridges are basically crowns on either side of a missing tooth and a fake tooth in the middle. It is all one piece and all three teeth are attached together and are cemented in the mouth. New technology and materials are making bridges stronger and more esthetic than in the past.
Veneers are a more permanent way to make esthetic changes the shape or shade of teeth. Minimal healthy tooth structure is removed to allow seating of the new material. If you are interested in veneers we like to meet with you to develop a detailed plan specific to your smile prior to starting any work.
We are able to utilize our technology to create crowns for implants in the same manner that we make crowns for natural teeth. Sometimes implants need healing time before a permanent crown can be placed. In these situations we can oftentimes make a temporary implant crown while the healing process takes place.