A regular visit to the family dentist may reveal that a patient has a chipped or cracked tooth. A patient generally knows if a tooth is fragmented due to its appearance. A tooth can become damaged from improper biting, cavities, poor hygiene, teeth grinding, and trauma. A cracked tooth is often harder to notice because…
CEREC® Crowns vs. Traditional Dental Crowns
People interested in making dental work quicker and easier may be interested in CEREC® crowns. This is a new development in dental technology that allows a dentist to craft the crown and place it in the mouth on the same day. The acronym stands for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramic® crowns.
The process starts out with a digital impression of the affected tooth taken with a special camera. This produces a 3D image that allows dentists to shape the CEREC® crown to the tooth exactly. Computers then aid the process of sculpting the crown out of porcelain so that it looks as close as possible to a natural tooth. Once the crown has been created, the dentist can then place it in the patient's mouth.
A CEREC® crown has many advantages over a traditional crown. However, there are also disadvantages, and in some situations a traditional crown may be more appropriate.
Advantages of CEREC® crowns
The main advantage of a CEREC® crown is that it can be created and placed the same day. This eliminates the necessity for placing a temporary crown for a few weeks until a traditional crown is ready. Temporary crowns are often ill-fitting and prone to coming loose and causing injury or discomfort.
A CEREC® crown is a good solution for someone who needs a quick fix for a dental problem. It is also a good option for people who are not able to take a lot of time from work for follow-up dental appointments. The whole process of crafting and placing a CEREC® crown only takes about two hours.
The crown restores the function of the tooth as well as the appearance. It looks and feels the same as the remaining natural teeth. It also does not require the dentist to drill away as much of the original tooth as a traditional crown does.
Disadvantages of CEREC® crowns
However, there are also downsides. Traditional crowns are still available, still effective and, in some cases, may be preferable to the CEREC® variety.
Because of the speed involved in crafting a CEREC® crown and the technological equipment used to do so, the procedure can cost more than a traditional crown. However, people who are weighing the costs against a traditional crown should be sure to factor in the cost of multiple dental visits needed to place a traditional crown, as well as money lost due to time taken off work.
Traditional crowns include metal components. This takes longer to produce, but it also makes the crown stronger and more durable. A CEREC® crown is made of porcelain, which is a reasonably strong material. Nevertheless, it still only has an expected lifespan of about 10 to 15 years, although it may be possible to extend this with good oral hygiene habits.
There are times when a traditional crown is preferable, such as when the fracture of the tooth extends below the gumline. However, CEREC® crowns are appropriate for many situations and make the process faster and less complicated.
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