The smile of the future: thanks to zirconium - no more dark rims around the crowns, no matter how many teeth have to be replaced.
For several years in holistic dentistry zirconia has proven to be an excellent material to work with. Zirconia is an all-ceramic material which is absolutely free of metal. It is a high-tech-ceramic developed for areas with high mechanical and thermal exposure (space travel). In the medical field it has been applied sucessfully for over 20 years (hip surgery). However, due to its tremendous resistence it found little use in dentistry until recently because processing was far too complex. Today the computer-controlled CAD/CAM system makes it possible to apply zirconia in dentistry with great success.
The great stability of the material allows even for mutliple bridges to be produced without any metal. Before this could have only be implemented with metal. Compared to metal and synthetic material zirconia is biocompatible, this is to say it is very well tolerated by the body. Interactions with other materials used in dentistry are not known. Zirconia does not have to be secured with synthetic cement as it is the case with other ceramic materials. With some adhesives health risks cannot be excluded, especially when dealing with a high-risk situation prior to the treatment. This is great news for patients with allergies and chronic illnesses.
However metal-free dental prothesis for cemented bridges or inlays as well as for individual crowns and aesthetic veneers are not only an alternative for ill patients. There is an increasing number of healthy patients with high demands regarding dental prothesis. Not only because of the enormous strenght and durability of zirconia but also because of its natural aesthetics. The wonderfully natural look of ziconia cannot be distinguish from one´s own teeth. This explains why there is such a high demand for this material.