Would you like your preparations to be more efficient and predictable? As dentists we can have the tendency to under reduce when we cut our preparations. This is due to the fact that we have a great respect for tooth structure and want to preserve as much of it as we can. The unfortunate side effect of this is that it can lead to restorations that are too thin.
Whether you send your indirect restorations to a lab or fabricate them yourself using a system such as CEREC, proper reduction will not only make the fabrication of your restorations easier, it will result in higher quality restorations.
One thing I have found is if you know the dimensions of your burs and the reduction you need, it makes your preparations easier to achieve. It's really that simple.
While manufacturers list the diameters of their burs there can be some variance between grits. If you are using tapered burs it's critical to measure both the tip and base. Given these facts, if we want to be as predictable as we can, it's best to measure your burs with a set of digital calipers. While this takes a bit of work, if you don't change manufacturers or grits you only need to do this once.
It's important to evaluate your provisional and/or final restorations for proper thickness and contours. If your restoration is thick enough but over-contoured it means you under reduced. Just as important though, if your restoration is properly contoured and much thicker than needed, you are over reducing.
John R. Carson, DDS, PC, Spear Visiting Faculty. [ www.johnrcarsondds.com ]