What’s new with crowns?

In terms of crowns or ‘caps’ for single teeth and ‘bridges’ for one or more missing teeth – new materials are being used. Traditionally metal was used for crowns and bridges due to its strength. Then the use of porcelain fused to metal crowns became the material of choice because of their esthetics and strength. The inner layer is metal with a tooth-coloured porcelain outer covering to match the other teeth in the mouth. However, porcelain fused to metal crowns can sometimes have a small gray rim of metal at their base.

The newest crowns can now be made with a ceramic base which is white in colour. Introduced in the last decade, Zirconia has mechanical properties which are the highest reported for any dental ceramic. Zirconia bases can be used with a porcelain outer layer to deliver great esthetic outcomes. Ceramic crowns can either have two layers or just one layer. In our office we have Cerec crowns. These ceramic crowns can be finished in one appointment! Usually a crown requires 1 week fabrication at a dental laboratory. With Cerec the crown is milled in the office at the same appointment! Ask us today if you are a candidate!

Since they are relatively new, only short term follow-up studies have been conducted but they show promising results. Long-term studies are needed to further assess clinical outcomes.