Over the last two months, I discussed how new technology, new techniques and new materials constantly challenge the dental profession. Sorting these out and selecting the best is a consistent endeavor for any quality dentist. I discussed the advantages and disadvantages that lasers and digital X-rays have brought to the dental profession. This month, I would like to review color-scanning technology. Have you ever seen someone with a crown or veneer on their front tooth and could tell from a mile away that it doesn’t match their other teeth? Until just recently, dentists had to use little colored shade tabs and try to figure out what color porcelain the dental laboratory should use when making their new crown or veneer. Unfortunately, this left a lot up to the interpretation of the dentist or assistant and often times it was wrong. Teeth appear to be all one color but actually have multiple bands and layers of different colors. Communicating these subtle nuances to the lab was virtually impossible. Often times, the patient had to visit the lab so the technician could attempt to match the porcelain of a new crown to the rest of the patient’s teeth. Now there is a new technology called ShadeVision. The system works with the same technology that matches paint color. The ShaveVison scanner is placed over the tooth and records color data. That data is e-mailed to the dental laboratory, and they use it to make a perfectly matched crown. They can even scan the crown they made and check it against the measurements provided by the dentist. This technology eliminates the guesswork and provides the patient with a well-matched, natural-looking crown. To see the new ShaveVision system at work, please contact Dr. James T. Gavrilos at 1-847-381-4040.