What is Zirconia?

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Zirconia Crown

What is Zirconia?

Zirconia is a metal oxide made from the metal Zirconium. It is commonly used for dental crowns because of its natural white color and its hardness.

Zirconia crowns are chemically unreactive and resistant to wearing and chipping. When they are sintered (baked) they adopt a transluscent, tooth-like appearance. All of these characteristics make it an ideal material for dental prosthetics.

Why is it so great?

There are many reasons why Zirconia crowns have become so popular among dental professionals recently.

  • Natural white color
  • High structural strength
  • Resistant to chipping
  • Resistant to extreme temperatures
  • Very biocompatible (it rarely causes infections or similar complications)
  • Does not require original tooth to be completely removed
  • Does not require a metal attachment
  • Looks very similar to natural teeth

How are Zirconia crowns made?

While some labs might have slightly different practices, this is the most common way that a zirconia crown is made:

Step 1. Creating an impression – In the first part of the process, a dentist makes an impression of their patient’s mouth. These impressions can be made physically or digitally.

To make a physical impression, the patient bites down on a putty-like substance, imprinting the shape of their teeth. To make a digital impression, the dentist uses a hand-held scanner that produces a digital imprint of the patient’s teeth (like an X-Ray).

Step 2. Designing – The impression is then sent to a dental lab. At the lab, technicians digitize the impressions (if needed) and use computer programs to design the crown. They digitally create a new tooth that will fit well and look natural in the patient’s mouth.

Step 3. Milling  – After the design is finished, it is sent to a milling/grinding machine. This machine produces the crown from a block of solid zirconia by a series of precise repetitive cuts. 

Step 4. Sintering – Commonly, once the tooth has been milled, it is sintered (baked) at very high temperatures to harden the material.

Step 5. Glazing – Once the crown has been sintered, it is usually hand-glazed by professionals to match the shade and color of the other teeth in the patient’s mouth.

Zirconia Crowns on mold
Two Zirconia crowns on a partial mold of the patient's dental arch

LPA Dental Lab produces high-quality crowns at a great price.

Lpa Dental Lab in Sacramento, California produces Regular & Cosmetic Zirconia crowns for dental offices all over the country. We offer 1-5 day turnaround and deliver personally to all offices within our Local Delivery Area.

Click Here to Contact Us About Your Dental Prosthetic Needs Today

Click Here to Read More Technical Details About Zirconia

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About LPA Dental Lab

A dental lab operating out of Ripon and Sacramento, CA. We use the latest in technology to manufacture high-end dental prosthetic, from traditional full-metal crowns to CAD/CAM Zirconia.

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