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A Dental Crown in Under an Hour? Yes, with CEREC


New CEREC 3-D technology and in-office milling machines make placing a dental crown a lunchtime procedure - and you can eat immediately after!

Studies have shown that up to 75% of Americans have some degree of fear of dentists, from mild to severe. In most cases, the fear is overcome and regular trips to the dentist are still made, resulting in brighter and healthier smiles across America. But what about more serious dental issues, such as the placement of a {!dental crown? | dental crowns} These procedures typically take several appointments and adjustments before the crown can even be put in the mouth - more reason for us to put it off, right? No longer. As seen on The Doctors, new technology, CEREC, is now available that makes dental crown placement a lunchtime procedure.

CEREC dental crown
Model Photo

The Doctors co-executive producer, Andrew Scher, has avoided going to the dentist for several months despite a broken crown and the pain it constantly causes. Due to his busy schedule, Andrew has not been able to make it in to see his dentist so Dr. Travis Stork enlisted the help of cosmetic dentist Dr. Kevin Barrett to fix his dental crown using the CEREC CAD/CAM technology.

What typically drags out the dental crown procedure is a mold needs to be made and then sent off to a lab, where the porcelain dental crown is created. Several trips to the dentist may be necessary to get the proper fit, color as well as the time needed for the crown to be made and shipped back.

What differentiates the CEREC CAD/CAM technology from the traditional procedure is by using a camera, computer, and milling machine, dentists can create and place crowns and onlays while the patient waits. Unlike previous dental crown procedures, where the tooth needs to be shaved down and mold taken - this technology allows dentists to save more of the healthy part of the tooth.

This process is quick: using the CEREC 3D camera, the dentist can show the patient the defect, zooming in as much as necessary between the prep site and the lens. After which, an optical impression can be created in seconds and sent to the milling machine that is in-office, which chisels a color-matched strong porcelain crown to be placed while the patient waits.

New dental bonding agents also speed up the process. Dr. Barrett says, "The new bonding agents bond to metal and the tooth much better than anything before." In fact, the excess bonding material must be removed as quickly as possible or it may form to undesired areas on the tooth. The crown is placed in under an hour and repeat appointments are not necessary.

The new technology also removes any food limitations that were traditionally necessary with placing a dental crown. Patients can eat whatever they want immediately after the procedure.

What are you waiting for? You could have your crown fixed during your lunch time!