Do you need a crown but dislike the thought of two trips to the dentist with a two-week period of wearing an uncomfortable temporary crown in between?  Anyone who has had a crown knows that this is just part of the process.  But does it have to be?

With CEREC, also known as same-day or same-appointment dental crowns, it all gets done in one visit!

CEREC is a sophisticated computer-aided system for producing durable high-quality ceramic restorations. It is simple to use, fast and excellent for conserving the natural tooth. It is ideal for patients who want a solid ceramic, authentic tooth-coloured alternative to traditional crowns made of metal or gold – all completed in one visit.

Testimonial from our patient!

My dentist, Dr. San Mahara, recently rescued another aging tooth that had a large chip break off.  He did this by installing a CEREC crown.  With this type of crown, instead of the process being 2 steps requiring 2 appointments and tolerating a less comfortable temporary crown for 2 or 3 weeks, it was all done with 1 appointment!

I did have to wait in the chair for a while.  However, while waiting, Dr. Mahara took me into the room where the machine was cutting the crown to shape so that I could watch it operating.  Also, the assistant brought me a very good cup of coffee and gave me the remote for the overhead TV.  I found an old Star Trek movie, one of my favorites. The time soon passed and Dr. Mahara returned with my new crown ready to finalize the job.

And shortly my broken tooth was ready for fearless eating once again thanks to the speedy repair done by Dr. San Mahara.

Time is very valuable to me.  I really appreciated the fact that the time needed to have a crown put on was cut by 50%.  The crown seems just as good as any previous crown built at the dental lab.  If I need another such crown I will definitely go for the same procedure as it is so pleasing to have it done in one dental chair sitting!

Are CEREC crowns new?

CEREC technology is not new. In fact, it has been around for nearly 30 years. Then why are they not offered by every dentist?  Many dental offices have not invested in this technology, due to start-up costs and additional training in computer dental assisted design and milling.

At Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group has chosen to invest in this valuable CEREC Crown technology so that all of our patients can minimize their time spent away from work and family yet also receive optimal restorative results.

CEREC how it worksWhat to Expect

Knowing what to expect when you come in for a same-day CEREC crown is essential.  While this amazing technology allows for one less trip to the clinic for a crown, no messy impression material, no temporary crowns, and more, the procedure does take slightly longer than the first visit for a traditional crown.  This makes sense considering that your new crown is custom milled to your exact needs on-site!

Here’s a breakdown of how your appointment will flow:

  1. Tooth prep; expect approximately 45 minutes for this stage – about the same as the prep for a traditional crown
  2. Digital impressions; no messy impression material to deal with here, it’s all digital – expect about 15 minutes on this part
  3. Digital computer design, milling and production – expect about 35 minutes on this stage
  4. Cementing the new crown – expect about 30 minutes on this stage.

The complete appointment will take about 1.5 to 2 hours if there are no complications.  Please allow for extra time if unique circumstances exist – we will let you know if this is the case.

Benefits of CEREC

CEREC crowns allow tooth restorations to be completed in a single session but there are several other benefits.  First of all, impressions are done with super accurate digital impressions.  This means no more putty-like material in your mouth to get an impression.

Secondly, the tooth is prepped and the crown fitted during the same visit, so there is no need for a temporary crown.  Temporary crowns, typically worn for about two weeks with traditional crowns can come loose or weaken during wear.  This is a thing of the past with CEREC technology.

Since CEREC crowns are made of a solid block of ceramic, they are considered to have a very strong structure.

Not only are CEREC crowns known for being strong, but ceramic provides a very natural-looking crown which reflects light in a similar way to our natural tooth structure.  Additionally, the ceramic blocks come in a wide variety of shades and colours, so your crown can be selected to blend in naturally with your surrounding teeth.


Like every great thing, it may not work in every situation.  CEREC technology is not right for all patients in all situations.  Depending on the circumstances and location of the tooth to be restored, other types of crowns may be more appropriate.


CEREC crowns are convenient and offer benefits such as excellent structural strength and natural appearance.  They are not offered by every dental office and there are some limitations to their application.  Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group is proud to bring CEREC technology to our patients.  Please call or email to book an appointment with us today: 250-754-4322.