As a dentist performimg cosmetic therapy in Charlotte, NC Dr. Plascyk uses a lot of porcelain materials in his practice. Because of the tremendous molecular stability, porcelain is the most durable and biocompatible dental material.
Traditional Porcelain: All traditional dental porcelain is feldspathic porcelain. This means it contains some amount of feldspar, which is naturally occurring glass. To get the best natural and cosmetic appearance for a cosmetic porcelain veneer or cosmetic porcelain crown, a lab technician will apply porcelain in different layers. This layering technique is used for cosmetic porcelain veneers and cosmetic porcelain crowns that will be placed on a patients front teeth. The typical components of traditional dental porcelain are:
IPS Empress: IPS Empress is porcelain that contains Leucite crystals, which strengthens the porcelain. It is stronger than layered porcelain and is meant to be used on premolars and anterior teeth. Typically a lab technician will apply traditional porcelain over IPS Empress to get both strength and excellent cosmetic appearance of the cosmetic porcelain veneer or cosmetic porcelain crown. Empress is used for treatment on single or individual teeth (not bridges).
IPS e.max: IPS e.max is a lithium disilicate glass ceramic. This is very strong porcelain that can be used on posterior teeth without any substructure or core material (see below). This material can be used on a single tooth or as a bridge for replacing missing teeth.
Core materials: There are times when porcelain for posterior teeth requires a substructure to improve strength. Back teeth must withstand intense pressure during biting or chewing. The other name for a substructure is a core. The core material I use is yttrium stabilized zirconium oxide. Some brand names of this material are Lava and Procera Zirconia.
Again, because of the tremendous molecular stability, core materials, IPS Empress, IPS e.max and traditional porcelains, these materials are highly biocompatible.