Yes, it is reality. In Poland recently, in the USA for over 25 years, the possibility of computer dentures has been existing.
Technology which only few years ago seemed to be a dream for many dentists, nowadays helps us in everyday treatment. Everything starts when we want to improve well-known and found medical procedures. Traditional teeth restoration is known to most, probably even to all the dentists in Poland and in the world. The dream of strong and beautiful dentures was the foundation of computer reconstruction system.In both traditional and computer method, it is obligatory to prepare a tooth which means clean of caries and old fillings. Then patient discusses with a doctor the method of filling – traditional one when the tooth loss is small or computer one recommended with bigger losses When the loss expands to the surface of tooth contiguous or/and it goes below the gingival level or/and it is extensive, we can provide them with inlay/onlay/overlay. These meanings are fillings made outside a patient’s mouth with computer (as in our clinic). Reconstruction can be made from many materials: composite, ceramics or metal (e.g. gold) and combination of them (e.g. gold + ceramics).
The most often we propose ceramic fillings system. After preparing a tooth, the loss and the surface of contrary tooth are scanned inside mouth with a device similar to a pen. Everything is done on a computer. A virtual tooth is viewed with magnification and used to design the reconstruction. When a doctor accepts all the parameters, within 10-15 minutes a milling machine cuts the filling from a ceramic block. The filling is adapted accurately to the patient’s occlusion and then the outside shining layer is put. The work takes about 1-2 hours. The progress in this kind of work is really big. In traditional method would take 3-5 days.
Are inlays necessary?
The answer is “yes”. They are more durable and often more aesthetic way of reconstruction. Traditional fillings lose their original tightness and the micro-leakage occurs which is followed by situation of the filling replacement. When we wear inlays, it happens seldom. When we take all the pros and cons, we can really recommend this method of a loss reconstruction and not be afraid of the need for re-intervention for a real long time.