What is CAD/CAM Dentistry?
CAD/CAM is a process in dentistry and prosthodontics using CAD/CAM (computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing) to improve the design and creation of dental restorations, especially dental prostheses, including:
- partial crowns (i.e. ¾ crowns)
- inlays and onlays
- fixed bridges
- dental implant-supported crowns and bridges
- dentures (removable or fixed)
- orthodontic retainers
How Does CAD/CAM Technology Work?
Using this technology, we are able to create restorations right in our office. Below is an overview of 5 of the main steps.
- The preparation. Certain steps often need to be taken to get ready for the restoration, such as making room for a dental bridge or shaping a tooth to hold a new crown.
- Taking digital impressions. This involves the use of a 3D intraoral scanner that takes digital impressions of your teeth, giving us the most incredible detail so that the future procedure can go smoothly.
- Designing the restoration. Using the digital impressions, the restoration will be created in our office.
- Milling. The process of creating your restoration, whether a crown, a bridge, veneer, or something else takes place in our office.
- The placement. Placing the restoration in your mouth is the final step.
CAD/CAM complements earlier technologies used for fabrication of these restorations by any combination of:
- Increasing the speed of design and creation allowing same-day delivery
- Increasing the convenience or simplicity of the design, creation, and insertion processes
- Making possible restorations and appliances that otherwise would have been infeasible
CAD/CAM dentistry uses subtractive processes (such as CNC milling) and additive processes (such as 3D printing) to produce physical dental applications from 3D virtual models..
Frequently Asked Questions
When is a dental crown needed?
In a general sense, dental crowns are used for restoring functionality and appearance to a tooth. Though they serve many different purposes throughout different types of dentistry, including general dentistry, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, endodontic dentistry, and more.
Can I get dental implants on the same day?
Unfortunately, no. Dental implants involve the process of implanting a titanium post into your jaw bone and allowing it to fuse together over several weeks. Once you are ready to move forward with the dental implant-supported crown, however, you can take advantage of our CAD/CAM dentistry.
What is the benefit of same-day restorations?
There are many advantages to being able to have your restorations done in a day. For example, with same-day crowns, you:
- Reduce the need for a temporary crown
- Get a precise, reliable finished product
- Preserve the underlying tooth quickly and easily
And, most importantly, they allow you to go about your life without worry, inconvenience, or insecurity.