Dentist Wants to Do CEREC on my Center Two Front Teeth. Would Lab Crowns Be Better?

As a teen, my teeth were bonded to close a gap teeth with poor results. In my early twenties a dentist suggested crowns as a permanent solution. I agreed not knowing that my healthy teeth would be filed down. I have since had my crowns replaced with very natural looking porcelain crowns that I loved, but are quite thick. Braces later damaged the finish from repeated filing and bonding (halo). My dentist wants to replace my crowns with CEREC but I am concerened about the aesthetics and quality.

Doctor Answers 13


It depends on your expectations and the dentist's expectations and skills. There are a small handful of CEREC dentists who might be able to pull this off for you. Very small. As a former owner of a CEREC the issue I had was that I could not make it live up to my expectations. It takes a highly skilled ceramist to make any crown or veneer look beautiful. Most dentists don't have these skills. But there are a few.  And it takes a ton of time back in their lab. In my hands after 3 years of trying and many advanced training courses it just didn't happen. In my opinion the best result for your situation is a great dentist and ceramist.

Dubuque Dentist

CEREC Dental Crowns

What it comes down to is do you like the quality of work your dentist does for you already?  Have you seen any of their cosmetic work done by a cerec?  Each of us dentist will have a differing opinion on this so ask your own dentist this question.  Aside from that, ask him/her to show you the crowns in your mouth pre-cementation to see if you like the quality of work.

Pamela Marzban, DDS
Fairfax Dentist

Cerec Front Crowns

This can be a tough answer. The answer actually is: It Depends!  Cerec crowns in the right hands can be extroordinarily beautiful.  But, even an "Average" Cerec is very nice. The laboratory fabricated crown should be nice but it too depends on th eperson fabricating the crowns.  Most any esthetic dentist should be able to fabricate beautiful restorations either way if they are a cerec user.  Ask the dentist you are going to what their thoughts are.  I would say most often, dentists will say the lab crowns simply because they are not famililar with the cerec technology. 

Keith Blankenship, DDS
Jacksonville Dentist

Cerec on front teeth.

You should be concerned with esthetics.  I would definitely not recommend that you have cerec crowns on the two front teeth.  Unless you want everyone to know you have two crowns.

Lab processed crowns have the potential to look far better than cerec crowns.


Dr. Alper

Steve Alper, DMD
New York Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Front Teeth Are the Most Challenging Teeth to Restore

You are asking a great question and the answer is the most beautiful corwns are done with layered porcelain built by a denatl lab.  The colors are layered in and the result is the most natural. (Feldsphathic Porcelain).  They are bonded on to the tooth.

Unfortunately, dark teeth can show through and we are doing more E-Max crowns to cover the darkness.  They are crowns with a opaque core that layer porcelain on top of the core to get the color.

Cerec crowns are great in the back but where you have color challenges, I suggest you talking more and finding an office that you can trust-Ask to look at pictures and talk to the staff.  They know.  I have a lab who customs my color with me-We have a oven to custom stain.  Hope that helps!

Wendy S. Spektor, DDS
Bellevue Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Lab crowns for anterior teeth are better

Cerec is a great system but it is better for back teeth. It is very important with the front teeth that the qualities of natural teeth are mimiced as closely as possibly. To achieve proper translucency, shading gradients and shape, a skilled dentist and ceramist need to work as a team. Wearing temps for a few days is beneficial because it gives you a chance to make changes prior to the permanents being fabricated

Jennifer Jablow, DDS
New York Dentist

Aesthetic Crown

This is a great question. There are some great ceramists out there that do some amazing work. But my experience with Cerec crowns are they are very vanilla in their esthetics. I always ask myself, would I want  that in my mouth, and the answer is a hugh NO! I would find a dentist who would do layering of the porcelain for the best result.

Phillip Kemp, DDS
Brentwood Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Cerec will have to be stained by a skilled ceramist

The likelihood of CEREC crowns matching without a highly skilled ceramist layering ceramic on them is pretty slim unless your teeth are fairly monochromatic and don't have much character (variations in shade, color density and translucency that most teeth possess).  CEREC is not capable of creating this.  The folks who do nice work with CEREC are staining the restorations themselves or have someone who does it for them.  If the dentist is among the rare few that is highly skilled at staining porcelain himself, you are in luck!  Then you can get a restoration in the same visit, which is the benefit of using CEREC in the first place.  If he has to send it out to a lab, then you lose the primary benefit of CEREC - the crown in a day effect.  As has been said, if you are striving for ultimate esthetics, CEREC is just another way of fabricating a structure upon which to layer porcelain.  It's all about the dentist's ability to recognize the right time to use a particular technique and deliver the result you need. Best of luck!!!

John Whittemore, DDS
Memphis Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Cerec vs. Porcelain Crowns

That's a terrific question.  The esthetic zone is very challenging.  I’ve seen great porcelain and Cerec crowns, but also a ton of poor work as well.  The main factor here is not so much the material, but the skill and experience of the clinician.  You should ask your dentist for some before and after photos, so you can judge for yourself if you like his work.  Every cosmetic dentist should have a large portfolio of cases to present to you.

We have an in-house lab in our office with an expert in technician working on every Cerec crown, they truly look amazing.  She’s very talented and spends hours working on each case.  I’ve also seen a lot of poor work with Cerec.  Same with porcelain crowns.   It just depends on the training and experience of your dentist and his team. Good Luck!

Peter Mann, DDS
Manhattan Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

CEREC crowns for front teeth

I am not a CEREC user, and haven't decided as a clinician whether the CERAC restorations are of the same quality as lab created restorations. As with everything else, the answer is in the hands of the technician. All the materials CEREC uses are the same materials that a lab uses, but a lab has more choices. This way, the dentist can decide which material and prep design is appropriate, and instruct the lab which material to use. If there is a problem, the lab technician and the dentist can consult and possibly change materials to get a better result. You lose this colaberation with CERAC. There are limited materials available with CEREC, and all of these require more agressive reduction of your teeth to use. The other issue with CERAC is that not all dentist are able to finish their restorations as well as a lab. To be able to stain and glaze (seal) a restoration the dentist needs to have his own porcelain oven. This would be a good question to ask. I routinely have my patient meet with the lab tech so the patient's expectations are communicated. This also gives the technician a chance to see the teeth up close and adjust for color. Food for thought. I wouldn't do CEREC unless I knew I could get as good results as a great lab.

Deborah Petronio, DDS
East Aurora Dentist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.