What are Zirconia Crowns

What are Zirconia Crowns?


Zirconia crowns are dental prostheses that are used for dental restoration and rehabilitation in people who have had damage to one or more teeth. Rehabilitation with dental crowns aims at the aesthetic and functional recovery of the smile through restoration of broken or missing teeth.


Crowns and bridges were traditionally made in metal-ceramics, in which a metal framework is covered with a ceramic covering, giving a more natural aesthetic. These crowns and bridges work well, however, their internal metallic color can bring some aesthetic inconveniences in the immediate or long-term final result. After time, metal-ceramic crowns can start to show the dark metal color underneath, which many patients don’t like. Currently, ceramic materials based on Zirconia (zirconium dioxide – ZrO2) have been developed, which, according to the literature, have physical and mechanical properties sufficient to withstand the masticatory (chewing) load, while maintaining the whiteness of natural teeth.


Zirconia acquires this resistance because it undergoes a controlled process called sintering, which involves heating it at a high temperature in a special oven. This process modifies its making particles, creating a solid and very strong prosthetic piece. Other properties of crowns with pure zirconia structure:

* metal free crown
* Translucency – even in brightly lit environments
* Biocompatibility – no risk of rejection
* There is no cold and heat conductivity
* Can be screwed or cemented on implants


Zirconia can be used in single fixed prostheses and currently in extensive fixed prostheses with up to 12 elements. And because it is an extremely resistant and reliable material, it can also be used in prostheses on implants and in the manufacture of customized abutments on implants, improving the aesthetic appearance.


Due to how the zirconia is made, it can be made very precisely to fit in your mouth and also, due to its translucency, can enhance the naturalness and positive aesthetics of your smile when used to make the prosthetic tooth on your crown. This makes it possible to imitate the look and feel of your natural teeth so that it is perfectly disguised and fits in with the rest of your natural teeth.


Zirconia also has an advantage over metal from a biological point of view, being highly biocompatible, which means that it is accepted by tissues without any immunological reaction, does not undergo oxidation or corrosion from oral fluids, and suffers from low adhesions of bacterial plaque. If you have a metal allergy, zirconia is also a great choice for your smile.


In addition to dental prostheses, Zirconia has been used in the manufacture of brackets for aesthetic fixed appliances in orthodontics. In this case, the brackets have a much more discreet and resistant appearance than the old pure ceramic ones. More recently, the first implants made of 100% Zirconia have also appeared, with more than 6 years of clinical studies in Europe, they may be an option to soon replace the Titanium implants in the anterior regions, since, due to their white color, they have a better aesthetic effect in the replacement of lost teeth in this region.


With so many qualities, Zirconia has been considered by several researchers as the main substitute for metal in current dentistry.

Zirconia vs. Porcelain Crowns