Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics
Who likes having trays with impression material in their mouth? No one. While this is an effective method to help with tooth repairs, it is pretty invasive and can be extremely uncomfortable. Thanks to modern technology, a dental tray with impression materials is no longer needed. Instead, if your dentist has the technology, you can have your tooth scanned with CEREC. CEREC stands for “Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics.” This repair technique reduces the discomfort of tooth repair and increases the speed of the process. So, less irritation and a shorter wait time!
Below is more information about CEREC technology, its benefits, and the process.
The CEREC Process
The CEREC process is pretty simple, but also multi-step. First, a unit (called the Acquisition Unit) is used to scan the tooth or teeth that need to be repaired. This is done with a special camera. The data from the camera is uploaded to a design program. From there, the dentist will design the prosthetic on the computer. Once the dentist is happy with the design, they will create the prosthetic in the office using a Milling Unit. A block of ceramic is molded and shaped to create your dental prosthetic with the unit. The material being molded will closely match the look of your natural tooth. The milling process generally takes around 10 to 20 minutes. Once the process is complete, your dentist will check to make sure the prosthetic fits properly. From there, they can place the replacement prosthetic and secure it.
Am I a Candidate for CEREC?
To see if you are a candidate for CEREC, it’s important to first understand what sort of repairs CEREC addresses. If your tooth is cracked, chipped, decayed, or broken, it will need to be repaired. In order to repair the tooth, a prosthetic will be placed. This is generally a veneer, dental bonding, or crown. If you need a crown, partial crown, or a veneer you may be a candidate for CEREC. If the damage is too severe to be repaired, a replacement may be required. You will not be a candidate if a replacement is necessary.
While CEREC is a great option for many patients, it’s best to set an appointment with Oxboro Dental to see if CEREC is right for you. They will take a look at the damaged or decayed tooth and put together a repair or replacement plan from there.
The Benefits of CEREC
There are a few fantastic benefits of CEREC. One of the main benefits is the lack of a physical impression. While some people are better at dealing with the tray and materials used for impressions, others are not. It can be extremely uncomfortable for some, which makes it difficult to complete. With CEREC, it is much less uncomfortable and much easier.
Using traditional methods, a dentist will need to match the tooth color before sending the impression to the lab and hope the color is perfect when the prosthetic arrives. They also may get the prosthetic and see that it needs to be further shaped. With CEREC, any issues can be addressed immediately.
Another major advantage of CEREC is how quick the repair process is. With traditional repairs, the patient will need to go home with a temporary crown and wait for the lab to create the permanent prosthetic. This can take a while. With CEREC, the crown or veneer is created on the spot. There is no temporary crown and no waiting around for the prosthetic to be created in a lab and shipped. If there are any problems, the dentist can make adjustments and print the prosthetic again quickly. When receiving a prosthetic from a lab, there may be issues that require another impression and printing. This means more time waiting.
With the help of a CEREC machine, you can be in and out with your permanent repair in as little as one trip to the dentist! If you have any additional questions about the CEREC process, reach out to Oxboro Dental. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Once you’ve had your prosthetic placed, you’ll want to make sure to take good care of it. While prosthetics like veneers and crowns are strong and durable, they aren’t invincible. Over time they will wear down and can even crack. Don’t chew on ice and be careful eating foods like popcorn. It’s also extremely important to understand your natural tooth is still sitting below your prosthetic. You can still develop tooth decay. If this is the case, your restoration may be at risk. If it gets bad enough, a repair may no longer be enough—you may need a replacement. Continue to brush, floss, and rinse twice a day, every day. This includes brushing the tooth with the replacement and flossing around the tooth.
Like your natural teeth, your tooth replacement can be stained. Make sure you avoid large amounts of tea, coffee, dark soda, red wine, and tobacco products. Over time, these will stain your new veneer or crown.
In order to avoid another tooth repair or a replacement, set an appointment with your dentist at Oxboro Dental twice a year, every year for a cleaning and checkup. Your dentist will thoroughly clean your teeth and gums, and will check to ensure your gums, teeth, and jawbone are healthy. If they notice any problems, they’ll address them immediately. Your dentist will also check your prosthetic to make sure there are no cracks, chips, or other damage. They will check the healthy tooth underneath as well to make sure there is no decay that needs to be addressed.
Ideally, you won’t need to have a tooth repaired. If it is cracked, chipped, decayed, or otherwise damaged, though, you will need to have it repaired as soon as possible. If given the option, a CEREC machine is the fastest and most efficient option for the production and placement of a tooth prosthetic.