CEREC® Same-Day Crowns and Restorations

Ceramic dental crowns, along with inlays and onlays, are designed to reinforce and protect teeth that have been compromised due to damage or decay. With traditional techniques, tooth restoration requires that a mold or digital scan of the treated tooth be sent to a third-party laboratory for the design and creation of the custom restoration. This process can take a matter of weeks and involves a second visit to the dentist’s office for the crown fitting and placement. With CEREC® technology, our dentist Jason Keckley, DMD is able to design, manufacture, and attach your custom crown during a single office visit.

What Is CEREC®?

CEREC® is a 3D restoration design and milling system that uses advanced software to create fully customized restorations right in the dental office. The CEREC® system eliminates the need for a dental lab and makes it possible for patients to have a crown, inlay, or onlay—whichever matches their exact needs and aesthetic requirements—designed, milled, and placed within the same day.

What Are the Benefits of CEREC® Crowns?

CEREC® same-day crowns and restorations are made to improve the strength of the tooth and the appearance of the patient’s smile. The benefits of CEREC® dental crowns, inlays, and onlays can include:

  • Reinforced tooth structure
  • Protection from future decay
  • Repaired cracks, chips, or areas of decay
  • Natural appearance
  • Comfortable fit

CEREC® technology uses digital impressions that eliminate the need for physical molds of the teeth, ultimately enhancing patient comfort during the visit and the final results. Each dental restoration is designed to blend perfectly with the surrounding teeth for a beautiful smile. Best of all, the entire procedure can be completed in just one day.

CEREC machine

Who Is a Good Candidate for CEREC® Crowns?

Virtually any patient who needs a dental crown can be a good candidate for a CEREC® crown. During a consultation, Dr. Keckley will perform a comprehensive dental exam to diagnose all dental issues and determine the best approach for improving your oral health. If you have a damaged/decayed tooth or old dental work that needs replacement, he may recommend a crown to restore and protect the tooth. He will offer you the option of a lab-crafted porcelain crown or a crown created with the CEREC® system, while explaining the benefits and drawbacks of each technique as they relate to your particular needs. The CEREC® system can also be used to create custom bridges, inlays, onlays, porcelain veneers, and dental implant crowns within the span of one appointment.

Same-Day CEREC® Crowns vs. Traditional Lab Crowns

Compared to traditional crowns and restorations that are fabricated in a dental lab, crowns and restorations made with the CEREC® system offer several advantages. Below we provide some comparisons between these two types of crowns:

  • CEREC® uses 3D digital scans instead of dental impressions made with putty and bite trays
  • CEREC® restorations can be designed, milled, and placed during a single appointment
  • Two visits are often required to complete a procedure with traditional lab crowns
  • With traditional crowns, a temporary crown is typically necessary to cover the prepared tooth while you wait for your final crown to return from the lab
  • Traditional lab crowns may take two weeks or more to return from the lab
  • CEREC® crowns are crafted from one solid block of ceramic material, which can make them stronger than certain kinds of traditional crowns
  • CEREC® crowns offer optimal aesthetics and fit in minimal time
  • Tooth preparation can be more conservative with a CEREC® crown

In some instances, a lab-made crown may be the better choice for your needs, and Dr. Keckley can explain why during your consultation. If you still have questions about the differences between these two methods, he can provide you with the answers you are looking for at the time of your visit.

What Is the CEREC® Same-Day Crown Process Like?

During the consultation process, Dr. Keckley will perform an oral exam, discuss your cosmetic goals, and help determine which method of tooth restoration can best meet your needs. If you are a good candidate for a CEREC® same-day dental crown, Dr. Keckley will first prepare the affected tooth to receive the restoration. With CEREC®’s digital scanning technology, an impression of the tooth can be made and then used to design and fabricate the final restoration in our office. Finally, Dr. Keckley can then bond the new restoration to the affected tooth, completing the procedure.

How Long Do CEREC® Crowns Last?

The length of time your CEREC® crown will last can vary based on the specific material used to craft the crown, the skill of your dentist, which tooth has been restored, and the alignment of your bite. With Dr. Keckley’s level of CEREC® experience, attention to detail, and commitment to comprehensive treatment, your crown has the potential to be long-lasting and problem-free.  CEREC® crowns can last exactly as long as crowns made by outsourced manufacturing methods. Maintaining good dental hygiene (brushing and flossing twice per day) and attending regularly scheduled cleanings/exams are basic requirements for keeping crowns in good shape. If you experience a problem with your CEREC® crown, please contact our practice immediately so that we can get you in to see Dr. Keckley as soon as possible.

How Do I Choose the Right CEREC® Doctor?

Although it can be argued the CEREC® system does a lot of the work, it is the training, skill, and experience of the operator that determines whether a CEREC® crown is a success or failure. When you are looking for a dentist that offers CEREC® crowns, ask about the training courses they have completed in CAD/CAM technology and CEREC®, as well as how long they have been using the CEREC® system. Any well-qualified CEREC® dentist should be willing to answer these questions honestly. You can also ask to see before-and-after photos of patients who have received CEREC® crowns so that you can examine the quality of the dentist’s work for yourself.

How Much Do CEREC® Crowns Cost?

The cost of treatment involving a CEREC® crown or restoration can depend upon a variety of factors, including:

  • Whether the restoration is an inlay, onlay, or crown
  • The type of material that is chosen for the restoration
  • The complexity of the tooth preparation process
  • Any fees for anesthetics or sedation dentistry techniques
  • The skill and experience of the CEREC® dentist

During your personal consultation, Dr. Keckley will recommend the type of CEREC® restoration that is most suitable for your needs and budget. When your consultation is complete, you will be provided with a comprehensive cost estimate for your overall care. If you have dental insurance, our helpful office team is happy to check on how much of the cost is covered by your plan. They can also explain any details regarding pricing and your benefits. In addition to working with many dental insurance plans, Coronado Classic Dentistry is an official VA Vendor.

For our patients’ convenience, we accept several methods of payment—major credit cards, health savings accounts, flex benefit cards, and more. For further details, we suggest reviewing our Financial Options page.

Additional Frequently Asked Questions About CEREC® Dental Crowns and Restorations

What if I am not a candidate for a CEREC® crown?

Dr. Keckley will determine the best course of action for addressing your dental needs after performing a comprehensive examination. If he thinks a dental crown is not a viable solution, he may recommend a porcelain veneer, tooth-colored filling, or another more appropriate treatment. During your visit with Dr. Keckley, he will develop a dental treatment plan custom-tailored for you.

What are the risks associated with CEREC® crowns?

CEREC® crowns are generally considered a very safe and effective method of protecting and reinforcing teeth that have been impacted by damage or decay. Right after a new crown is placed, it may be sensitive to hot and cold temperatures; however, this sensation should subside over time. It is possible for decay or infection to develop even with a crown, so it is important to maintain good dental hygiene. If you feel pain in your tooth or your crown becomes loose, it is best to contact our office so that we can schedule an appointment to determine the cause of the problem and proceed with an appropriate treatment. Just like a real tooth, a CEREC® crown can chip, crack, or break if it comes into forceful contact with a hard substance or is affected by trauma.

What’s the difference between a porcelain veneer and a CEREC® crown?

Porcelain veneers are used as a cosmetic treatment, whereas dental crowns are a restorative procedure. Veneers are commonly used to conceal surface stains, cracks, and/or gaps in the teeth and possibly chipped teeth. Dental crowns, on the other hand, are used to repair decayed teeth or teeth that may have been damaged by injury or trauma. Dr. Keckley can help determine which treatment is the most beneficial for your unique needs.

How strong are CEREC® crowns?

CEREC® crowns and restorations are typically milled from a durable, high-quality dental ceramic. The incredible strength and resistance to abrasion of restorations made with the CEREC® system can enable them to be a reliable, long-lasting, sturdy option for a range of restorative dental needs.

Do CEREC® crowns look natural?

The innovative CEREC® system can produce high-quality dental crowns that look and feel just like your natural teeth. When using CEREC® technology, the design and fit of a custom crown is computer-generated using 3D impressions of your teeth along with advanced imaging software. CEREC® crowns are also metal-free, so unlike traditional crowns, there is no dark metal margin visible at the gumline. Each crown is precisely shade-matched to seamlessly blend in with surrounding teeth for a natural-looking restoration.

How do I care for my CEREC® crowns?

In most cases, good oral hygiene and dental check-ups are all that is necessary to care for CEREC® crowns. This includes daily brushing and flossing as well as twice yearly professional cleanings. To support the longevity of your CEREC® crown(s), it is also recommended that you avoid biting your nails and grinding or clenching your teeth, as these habits can prematurely wear down the restoration or cause it to become loose. If needed, wearing a protective custom night guard can help to prevent damage to the dental crown.

Will insurance cover CEREC® crowns?

Many dental insurance plans offer at least partial coverage of dental crowns for restorative purposes, regardless of whether they are CEREC® or traditional crowns. The policies and benefits will most likely vary based on the insurance provider, number of crowns needed, combined dental work, and other factors. Once you receive a personalized treatment plan and price estimate, variables such as insurance coverage and out-of-pocket costs can be reviewed on an individualized basis.

Can you whiten CEREC® crowns?

Once a dental crown is placed, it is typically not possible to significantly alter the shade of the porcelain material beyond routine cleaning and polishing. Prior to treatment, if an overall brighter, white smile aesthetic is desired, your dentist may recommend professional teeth whitening or porcelain veneers so the CEREC® crown can be matched to the lighter shade while still looking natural. The only way to comprehensively change the shade of an existing dental crown is to replace it with a new crown in the shade you prefer.

If you are interested in learning more about CEREC® same-day crowns, please contact us today. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Keckley to discover if you are a good candidate for this restorative dentistry technique.

Schedule Your Consultation Email Us 619-435-9191

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