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Skip The Metal: Its Time To Go Metal Free!!!

Did You Know: Porcelain fused to non precious metal alloy caps have an inner core of non precious metal alloy with a layering of ceramic over it. So, although they match the shade of teeth when seen from outside, they have a number of disadvantages.

Porcelain fused to metal caps

The disadvantages include

  1. Ceramic layered over the metal is more prone to chipping and fracture.
    Fractured ceramic
  2. Compromised cosmetics: Ceramic is a translucent material like our natural teeth whereas metal becomes opaque and it becomes difficult to mask the grey colour of the metal substructure giving it an inferior esthetic appearance.
    Light transmission of porcelain fused to metal cap vs metal free caps
  3. Metal allergy: Many individuals are prone to allergy from the metal in porcelain fused to metal crowns.
  4. The amount of tooth reduction (tooth trimming) required for a porcelain fused to metal cap is more than that for metal free caps.

Types of metal free crowns

With the advancing technology, the options for metal free crowns have increased manifold.

Also, the introduction of zirconia (also known as the 'white metal'), has induced many changes in the quality of caps and bridges.

Metal free bridge

Various types of metal free crowns are available which are chosen according to the patients' needs. They include:

  1. E-MAX Crown/ Bridge/ Laminate: Material: Lithium disilicate core with layering of E-Max ceramic. It is used in highly esthetic areas (eg: front teeth). It is not used for back teeth.
  2. 5YW and ULTRA-Translucent Crown/Bridge: Material: Zirconia core with layering of a special ceramic. It can be used for both front and back teeth.
  3. Full contoured Zirconia crown/bridge (Monolithic crown/bridge: BRUXZIR) Material: A single block of zirconia is milled according to tooth shape and staining is done to match it with tooth colour. There is no layering of ceramic over it. It has very high strength and is used in patients with high biting force and habit of clenching.
  4. LAVA crown and bridge by 3M-ESPE: Material: Special LAVA Zirconia core layered with LAVA Ceramic. It is one of the most accurate and precise materials with extremely good esthetics. Can be used for both front and back teeth.

The technique for fabrication of all these caps can be by milling blocks of zirconia or lithium disilicate or by CAD/CAM technology, thus making the procedure highly accurate and giving the caps a superior fit.

Now, its your turn to go METAL FREE!!!


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