One thing that keeps many people from going to the dentist is outdated tools and techniques. If you’ve ever had to get a restoration in the past, you may have had to make an impression to create a “map” of your teeth. Although this allows your dentist or orthodontist to make restorations, it can be uncomfortable and unpleasant. Thanks to newer technology, you no longer have to make impressions. Called CAD/CAM technology, this new tool allows our team here at South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics to provide a more enjoyable experience. Here’s what to know about CAD/CAM and dental restorations.
What is CAD/CAM?
CAD/CAM stands for “computer-aided design” and “computer-aided manufacturing.” It works by creating a 3D, computerized scan or image of the area with a specialized camera, allowing your orthodontist to have a complete picture of your teeth and the appropriate restoration. Once your orthodontist has this computerized scan, they can use it to then create your restoration with extremely precise and detailed accuracy. We use CAD/CAM technology to custom-design a variety of tooth-colored restorations like crowns, inlays, onlays, veneers, and more. Because CAD/CAM technology is so advanced and precise, it’s often the best way to restore a healthy, beautiful, natural-looking smile.
The Benefits of CAD/CAM Technology
There are many different benefits of CAD/CAM technology over traditional impressions. Some of the biggest benefits include:
- It’s extremely precise and accurate
- Less tooth preparation is needed for restorations, leaving more healthy tooth structure intact
- Scans can be completed in a single appointment, even when more than one tooth is involved
- Tooth-colored materials can be used to create a more natural-looking smile
In short, CAD/CAM technology allows your restoration process to be smoother, quicker, and more effective than traditional methods.
Your CAD/CAM Restoration Procedure
Your CAD/CAM scanning process can be completed in a single appointment at our Reno, NV office. To begin, the area will be numbed so that you’re comfortable. A rubber dam may be used to protect your mouth. Once you’re ready, the tooth will be reshaped with specialized tools and any decay will be removed. Next, a specialized reflective powder is applied to the tooth to allow the contours to stand out when the scan is taken.
CAD/CAM computers use a specialized optical infrared camera to take a digital image. This image records the tooth’s exact dimensions, as well as the surrounding area. Then, this image can be used to design the restoration using advanced computer software.
Once the appropriate material is chosen for your restoration, it’s placed in a milling machine which shapes the restoration according to the custom dimensions programmed into the machine. Once the restoration is created, it’s then prepared and placed with cement or bond. Finally, your orthodontist will check the restoration to ensure your bite is healthy and appropriately aligned – making any necessary adjustments and polishing your restoration to a beautiful shine.
Schedule an Appointment
At South Meadows Dental & Orthodontics, we use advanced CAD/CAM technology to help make your restoration process easy. To learn more and meet with our team, contact us today by calling or filling out our online form.