When deciding between zirconium oxide and lithium disilicate, you are not faced with a decision of principle – but with great potential and unimaginable possibilities.Each day in the dental laboratory and dental practice presents dental professionals with new and often challenging situations. Many patients come into practice wanting new and beautiful teeth. As a dental technician, your first priority should always be to restore the patient’s function before achieving a perfect esthetic appearance. But which material is correct for which situation?

Function, esthetics, compatibility

Function and esthetics – it’s not easy to achieve both of these requirements together. Every patient case is different. For example, in patients with severe bruxism, some restoration materials are excluded from the outset: Even though they meet the high esthetic requirements, they are not strong enough.

In addition: The selection and composition of dental materials do not only determine function and esthetics. The patient also has to feel comfortable. Therefore, the dental technician and the dentist are faced with a high degree of responsibility in several respects.

Don’t choose the material for the dental restoration by gut instinct

Material science is a complex subject. Navigating your way around the material jungle of suppliers can be time-consuming and nerve-wracking. Choosing the right material is extremely important. The decision shouldn’t be made according to a “gut” feeling. Ultimately, the success of every dental restoration depends on the material used.

The most suitable material always depends on the situation

All-ceramic restoration materials are replacing the classic metal-ceramic restorations more and more due to their material and esthetic advantages. In the case of high-quality dental restorations, all-ceramic materials such as zirconium oxide, lithium disilicate or glass-ceramics play a particularly important role thanks to their excellent properties:

  • Zirconium oxide is becoming increasingly popular due to its visual appearance and mechanical strength. It is a high-strength, tooth-coloured, biocompatible material, which can also be veneered with ceramic. In particular, its strength enables it to be used for a wide range of indications.
  • Lithium disilicate glass-ceramic is distinguished by an equally wide range of indications and excellent esthetics. Among other indications, this material is excellent for highly esthetic anterior restorations and also has good mechanical properties.

Both materials, zirconium oxide and lithium disilicate, can be individualized with coordinated ceramic build-up materials, e.g. after a cut-back. This allows you to achieve strong esthetic results. They are suitable for different clinical cases depending on the situation and requirements. And: Both complement each other. When deciding between zirconium oxide and lithium disilicate, you are not faced with a decision of principle – but with great potential and unimaginable possibilities.

A system leading to success

An all-ceramic system such as IPS e.max gives you the material concept to realize the dental restorations patients dream of. Whatever manufacturing technique or processing methods you decide on, these materials offer solutions for almost all indications. They are well coordinated with each other and can be used together without compromising esthetic requirements. 


Discover unprecedented possibilities with the proven IPS e.max system.

IPS e.max exceed expectations

IPS e.max is a registered trademark of Ivoclar Vivadent AG. Availability of certain products may vary from country to country.