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CAD-CAM Dentistry

Single Visit, All Ceramic, Metal Free Crowns, Veneers, or Bridges

Traditionally, if crowns, onlays, inlays or dental veneers were required to restore damaged teeth, multiple procedures and a great deal of waiting time in-between would be inevitable. Our office creates these ceramic restorations which means that many treatments can be completed in just a single visit.

We utilize computer-assisted design (CAD) tools and a milling machine that creates custom ceramic restorative devices. This is of great benefit to nervous patients, and it can also reduce the cost of treatment

What is the CAD-CAM system comprised of?

CAD-CAM means Computer Assisted Design and Computer Assisted Milling. The system has three major components:

Acquisition device: This device is home to a high-quality camera and a medical grade computer. The function of this unit is to photograph the prepared tooth. Three-dimensional images are created of the tooth on the screen, which the dentist uses to design the perfect ceramic restoration.

Three-dimensional CAD software: This software allows the dentist to examine the tooth from every angle. It is the closest possible thing to holding the tooth in the hands and rotating it.

Milling device: This unit actually manufactures the custom restoration from the specifications entered into the computer. A ceramic block that best resembles the existing tooth color is chosen and placed into the unit.  Within minutes, the milling device produces the restoration the dentist designed.

How does the CAD-CAM restoration procedure work?

The first step in the procedure is preparing the tooth for the restoration.  Depending on your particular case, the dentist will take intraoral scans of the affected teeth.

These images are transposed onto the computer screen, where the dentist will view the tooth from every angle and design the final restoration.  When the design is complete, it will be transmitted to the milling unit.  
The dentist will insert a block of ceramic, matching your tooth color, into the milling machine which will then create the full crown, onlay, inlay, or veneer.  Before affixing the restoration to the tooth, the dentist will perform a dry fit to ensure comfort.  Once a perfect fit is established, the restoration will be polished and affixed to the tooth with dental cement. 

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