Dental ceramics: a review of new materials and processing methods
Abstract The evolution of computerized systems for the production of dental restorations associated to the development of novel microstructures for ceramic materials has caused an important change in the clinical workflow for dentists and technicians, as well as in the treatment options offered to patients. New microstructures have also been developed by the industry in order to offer ceramic and composite materials with optimized properties, i.e., good mechanical properties, appropriate wear behavior and acceptable aesthetic characteristics. The objective of this literature review is to discuss the main advantages and disadvantages of the new ceramic systems and processing methods. The manuscript is divided in five parts: I) monolithic zirconia restorations; II) multilayered dental prostheses; III) new glass-ceramics; IV) polymer infiltrated ceramics; and V) novel processing technologies. Dental ceramics and processing technologies have evolved significantly in the past ten years, with most of the evolution being related to new microstructures and CAD-CAM methods. In addition, a trend towards the use of monolithic restorations has changed the way clinicians produce all-ceramic dental prostheses, since the more aesthetic multilayered restorations unfortunately are more prone to chipping or delamination. Composite materials processed via CAD-CAM have become an interesting option, as they have intermediate properties between ceramics and polymers and are more easily milled and polished.