3D Printing (CAD/CAM) Technology for Dental Practices

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What is CAD/CAM technology?


CAD/CAM means computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing. CAD/CAM technology has been around in other industries.  It was in the 1980’s when the CAD/CAM concept was introduced in the field of dentistry. Since them the quality and the precision of this technology has improved to obtain near 100% accuracy in the hands of experienced clinicians, an increasing number of practices are implementing this methodology in their practice.  This innovative technique is to scan, design and create dental restorations, especially dental prostheses, including crowns, veneers, inlays and onlays, fixed bridges, dental implants restorations, and even dentures.

In our video below, you can see Dr. Stella Oh using the device and analyzing the 3D complete scan.

How Does it Work?

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Dental CAD/CAM technology is available for dental practices and laboratories, enabling dental healthcare professionals to visualize the teeth and design restorations on a computer screen.

The CAD/CAM software displays a 3-D custom picture of your prepared tooth or teeth obtained by an ocular scanner. Or when the impression is made on your teeth, the 3-D images can be obtained by scanning a traditional model taken from conventional impressions.

The 3D images and the CAD software will help the dentists or the technicians to design the final teeth restoration.

The amount of time it takes to produce a highly accurate restoration can vary greatly depending on many factors.  Based on the complexity of the case, a skill of the lab technician and dental healthcare professional, it could take less than an hour to a few days. (just like any lab manufactured restorations)

If the final restoration design is finished, the crown, inlay, onlay, veneer or bridge will be milled from a single block of ceramic substance inside a miolding chamber.

After that, the restoration then can be designed according to the patient’s natural teeth color such as the stains and glazes of the teeth. This is to create a more natural look especially in Madison Avenue Dentists, we aim to give you the best natural smile you can optimally get. With the recent advanced technology, we strive for more accurate and better teeth restorations.

Benefits of CAD/CAM Dentistry

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  1. Numerous research suggests that today’s milled CAD/CAM restorations are stronger than those milled from earlier materials. They also are less likely to fracture.
  2. If 3D Milling Machine is in the office, same day dentistry may be possible. Ther limitations will be discussed later.
  3. If your dentist offers a CAD/CAM technology, you do not require traditional impressions.  The impression materials in dentistry are by not earth friendly. Although the impression materials are considered non-toxic for the human body, the used impression materials are an insurmountable amount of hazard to our environment.  If in office milling machine is used, there would no temporary restoration and second appointment with anesthesia if indicated.
  4. The accuracy of the CAD/CAM restorations to close the margins for the restorations are so much superior to the conventional restorations.
  5. The milling blocks use are so much superior to conventional white filling materials.

Dental Restorations and Devices with CAD/CAM

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  • Inlays and onlays
  • Veneers
  • Copings
  • Substructures of Dentures, Bridges, Implant restorations
  • Full coverage crowns
  • Dental Implant Surgical Guide
  • Invisible Braces ( Clear Aligners)
  • Dental Implant Restorations

There are fundamental techniques that can be used for CAD/CAM reconstructions. One is strictly chairside – a single-visit procedure – while the other includes an integrated chairside—laboratory CAD/CAM system.

CAD/CAM Vs. Traditional Impressions

PROS AND CONS if CAD/CAM Technology in Dentistry

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Advantages

  • One-visit restorative procedure
  • No impression making – So much more eco-friendly
  • No temporary restoration required (when it is 1 visit – but not always possible)
  • Reduced potential for tooth sensitization  
  • No model or die pouring
  • Accuracy
  • Less opportunity for error compared to the traditional technique
  • Aids prep visualization

Disadvantages

  • Soft-tissue management can be more crucial than with the old technique
  • There are some scenarios that require customization depending on the material and the patient’s case
  • High-learning curve
  • Much longer appointment time if done at the office
  • Multiple unit cases will still need several visits
  • Not every tooth can be restored with CAD/CAM technology
  • Desired Esthetics may be challenging to achieve

Is CAD/CAM Dentistry Right for You?

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Our doctors, Dr. Oh, and Dr. Estafan, at Madison Avenue Dentists will let you know if you’re a qualified candidate for the CAD/CAM technology. Call us to today to make an appointment with our specialist for consultation.

Book an Appointment Now!
If you are looking for the best dental clinic in NYC and the most innovative, look no further! We invest in the best equipment in order to provide the best smiles. It’s as simple as that!