Dental crowns are commonly used along with implants to replace missing or decayed teeth and also be used in dental bridges and partial dentures as anchors. Traditionally crowns are made of stainless steel, porcelain and gold. Porcelain crowns offer a more natural appearance but are more prone to chipping due to lack of strength. Gold crowns are expensive, and have an unsightly appearance Zirconia crown is a relatively newer ceramic material that marries the strength of metals with the natural look of porcelain, for a more esthetic dental restoration and is thus becoming increasingly popular. Zirconia crowns can be milled in the dental office and fixed on the same day, while other crowns are typically made in a dental lab.
Types and Indications:
Some dentists prefer zirconia over all-ceramic restorations especially in single tooth restorations. Crown can be fabricated from solid opaque zirconia, high translucent zirconia or layered zirconia. Solid zirconia, or monolithic zirconia, is opaque, durable, withstands chewing and grinding forces which is why it’s generally recommended for posterior crowns. This material is particularly suitable for patients who may have a habit of grinding their teeth. Since the clearance required for the restoration is minimal there is low wear on opposing teeth.
On your dental appointment the images of the teeth and design of the crown are captured by the dentist with a scan.Scanned data is then uploaded into a computer with software that can design the crown. The dentist will check the correct amount of contact with adjacent and opposing teeth is in place before the crown is sent for milling, sintering and polishing. Sintering refers to baking at high temperatures to harden the Zirconium. The customised crown ensures a good fit that needs very little or no adjustments after cementing to the tooth. Milling unit carves a crown out of the block of zirconium material. The milled crown is placed in a furnace for strengthening and finally glazed to a smooth finish. The crown is ready for cementing or bonding in a single appointment and so called same day crown. Zirconia crowns can be cemented or bonded and are extremely durable.
Benefits of Zirconia Crowns?
Very few downsides of Zirconium crown like the concern about wear of the opposing tooth due to the toughness and friction against the root of the tooth, Its durability, makes caries detection difficult but can be offset with frequent dental check ups. It is expensive but cost is variable from dentist to dentist. Limited translucence suits only posterior teeth.