Ask Dr. Dave DDS Blog
One of our missions is to conserve as much of your natural tooth structure as possible. As you may know, a crown restores and covers a tooth on all surfaces. Like fillings, however, inlays and onlays are restorations that fill in the decayed areas or replace an old filling. Quite often an inlay or onlay may be used instead of the more invasive crown. They fit your prepared tooth perfectly like a piece in a jigsaw puzzle. They offer a longer lifespan for the tooth because we can conserve more of your natural healthy tooth structure than is possible with other types of restorations. For teeth with cracks and fractures, the bonding procedure actually strengthens the tooth structure up to 105 percent!
Technology today is changing our everyday lives. Innovations in dental treatments are requiring less time in the dental chair, causing less discomfort, and creating more satisfying results. One breakthrough, Cerec, allows us to restore damaged or decayed teeth with an onlay in one visit.
Cerec uses computer aided design/computer aided manufacturing, CAD/CAM , technology, incorporating a camera, computer, and a milling machine. We take a picture of the damaged tooth and the impression is transferred to a computer where the restoration is designed and then the milling machine creates the restoration. We then bond the tooth colored resoration to the tooth with the whole process taking about an hour.
In many cases the Cerec dental restorations replace old mercury/silver fillings which have expanded with age and fractured the teeth. Sometimes new decay will start around old fillings. Cerec is especially useful in areas where substantial amounts of the tooth is damaged or missing. Onlays or crowns using Cerec are strong, safe, precise, and effective.