Benefits of Zirconia Crowns
Dental professionals rely on crowns, prosthetic teeth that are bonded onto existing teeth or implants, to protect and cap a tooth that has had extensive treatment or to fit over an implant. Whether to restore a smile or to protect a tooth, a crown can play an important role in the overall oral health and well-being of a patient.
Crowns can be made from a number of materials, each with its own benefits and list of potential concerns. Ceramic, resin, gold, and stainless steel are just some of the most popular materials that have been used to make crowns for decades. Zirconia is a relatively newer material to the dental field, and it has proven to offer a number of solid benefits that patients and their dentists can both agree upon. Zirconium dioxide is an oxide that is made from metal zirconium.
Zirconia is made from biocompatible materials that offer similar properties to those of titanium, which has long been used in dental procedures and is most often the base used for dental implants. Zirconia crowns have been used as dental restorative materials since the early 2000s, and have since grown in popularity amongst dental professionals.
Increased Strength and Durability
One of the biggest challenges in the dental field is to ensure that restorative procedures use biocompatible materials that can stand up to the pressure exacted by the forces of chewing. Zirconia offers much greater strength over porcelain, with as much as 5 times the amount of strength as is seen with porcelain and other types of crowns. This makes zirconia a great choice for dental patients who may have a history of fractured, cracked or otherwise broken crowns made of other materials. Patients who bite their nails or grind their teeth, whether consciously or during sleep, can all find that there is an impact on the stability of crowns. Zirconia can better stand up to these exerted pressures, which means less need for additional reconstruction on these prosthetics in the future.
Better Stain Resistance
Zirconia can resist staining much better than composite ceramic or acrylic crowns. This is important to dental patients for whom a natural looking smile takes priority. It can resist staining from coffee, tea, wine, and nicotine. Adjustments in the color of the crown may be necessary in time, as the natural teeth change due to staining or age, or if they are whitened to a much lighter shade.
Original Tooth Preservation
Other types of crowns that are fit over natural teeth in order to offer protection may require a fair bit of the tooth be removed in order to get the best fit. Other otherwise healthy teeth surrounding the crowned tooth may also require some preparation before the crown is fit in place. Zirconia crowns do not require as much removal of the natural tooth. This means that there is much more preservation of natural healthy teeth, which can go a long way toward ensuring overall dental health. Preservation of the natural tooth is quite often the priority of the dental professional.
Zirconia offers a high compatibility with the human body, and it is why this material can be found with a number of medical applications. There is much less of a chance of a patient experience an allergic reaction to zirconia, which will of course help with avoiding the potential for rejection. Some patients have a sensitivity to certain metals and materials. An infection or rejection can lead to pain, infection, and additional tooth or jaw bone loss. Zirconia crowns are metal-free and boast a biocompatible composition that can be well-tolerated by even patients with the highest levels of sensitivity.
While the color and translucence of the zirconia gives it a much more natural appearance so that it blends in well with natural teeth, it isn’t always a good choice for using on teeth that will have high visibility. It might be better suited for teeth that are further back in the mouth unless it is layered with porcelain to give it a seamless appearance that fits better with front teeth. This improved aesthetic is something that dental patients will appreciate each time they smile wide.
The ability to better resist hot and cold temperatures can help to protect against the hypersensitivity that is often seen with other crowns. Zirconia crowns boast a low thermal conductivity and do not transfer extreme fluctuations in temperature as other crowns do. This means that there is a decreased potential for discomfort in the patient's mouth when eating those ice-cold treats or enjoying a hot beverage.
Zirconia is easy to modify, shape the way you need it to be shaped and can be recolored to get a perfect match to existing natural teeth if there is a need to alter the coloration on it. This also means that there is the ability to get a perfect comfort and bite match for the dental patient.
Because zirconia crowns are made using prefabricated blocks, they can be prepared and turned around much more efficiently than some other materials can be. Submitting your prescription, with measurements and requirements, Sky-Cad can process and deliver the crowns so that patients are not left waiting with temporary crowns for an extended period.
The Perfect Fit
Sky-Cad mills zirconia crowns using digital scans and requirements sent over by dental professionals, so that the perfect fit can be achieved for the patient. Not only does this ensure the comfort of the patient, but it also helps to ensure that the patient isn’t waiting for months on end while adjustments are made. Digital scans are efficient and create the durable and functional crowns that patients deserve.
There are not very many downsides to consider when it comes to zirconia crowns. They offer much more by way of benefits to the dental patient and offer very few if any ill-effects that patients and their dentists need to be aware of. This said, each patient will have his or her own individual needs, and will need to be evaluated on a case-by-case situation.