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CEREC Vs. Traditional Crowns: The Pros And Cons

If you need a crown in Lafayette or Louisville, you may be wondering whether to choose a traditional lab-made crown or a CEREC same-day crown. The team at Life Dentistry wants to keep you informed about all of your options, so we’ve created a pro and con list of lab-made and same-day crowns. Here’s everything you need to know:  

CEREC Pros & Cons

CEREC crowns are made in our office by a specialized computer and CAD/CAM (computer-assisted design/manufacturing) machine. After your mouth is scanned, Dr. Martin will load a block of porcelain into the machine, then design your crown. The porcelain is immediately cut into shape and it can be placed on your tooth right away.  


  • CEREC crowns are extremely convenient and only require a single appointment at our office
  • You don’t need to wear a temporary crown to protect your tooth while you wait for your crown to be made
  • CEREC does not require uncomfortable dental impressions, since it uses an advanced 3D scanner


  • CEREC crowns can’t be used for every damaged tooth. For example, a tooth broken below the gumline can’t be scanned with the CEREC scanner, so a traditional crown will be required
  • CEREC crowns may not match your teeth as perfectly as a lab-made crown
  • Your CEREC crown will have less fine detail as compared to a lab-made crown

Traditional (Lab-Made) Crowns Pros & Cons

Traditionally, crowns have been made at an outside dental lab. After Dr. Martin prepares your tooth, he will take images and dental impressions that will be sent to a trusted third-party lab. Then, your custom crown will be built. This usually takes between 2-3 weeks, and you’ll need to come into Life Dentistry for 2 appointments to complete your crown procedure.  


  • Lab-made crowns usually use a porcelain-fused-to-metal design that is extremely durable
  • A lab-made crown will typically have a finer level of detail and match your teeth more closely
  • Traditional crowns are usually (but not always) a less costly option compared to CEREC


  • You’ll have to wait 2-3 weeks between appointments and wear a temporary crown in the meantime
  • Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns can cause a dark line to show near the gums, particularly if the gums recede, impacting aesthetics
  • If your crown does not fit perfectly, adjusting it and changing it may take longer 

Is A CEREC Or Traditional Crown Right For Me? Find Out At Life Dentistry!

Still not sure whether a CEREC crown or a traditional, lab-made crown is right for you? At Life Dentistry, Dr. Martin is here to help. During a consultation, Dr. Martin will examine your mouth, determine if you need a dental crown, and help you decide if a CEREC crown or a lab-made crown is a better option for you. 

By considering your budget, oral health, and personal preferences, we can choose the treatment that’s right for you. Contact us now at (970) 289-5433 to get started, or stop by our office at 110 Old Laramie Trail, Unit 100, Lafayette, CO 80026 for more information.

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