Zirconium is rapidly becoming the material of choice for dental crowns. It is a very strong material able to withstand the wear and tear of every day use. Aesthetically, it is translucent very similar to a natural tooth, reflecting light in much the same way.
This means that Zirconium has a very aesthetic effect, which may be important if your new crowns are to be at the front of your mouth and is particularly relevant in cases where the crowns will be seen beside natural teeth.
Porcelain is the traditional material used for new crowns. Full porcelain however may chip or break. This is overcome by making the crowns from metal, in this case the metal being zirconia, then fusing porcelain to the outside. The zirconia metal provides the strength whilst the porcelain provides the outward appearance on a normal tooth. Zirconium crowns allow light to pass through as with a normal tooth giving a natural look, unlike other metal cores which block the light.
General Definition: A crown is a type of dental restoration which completely caps or encircles a tooth or dental implant and is typically bonded to the tooth using dental cement. Crowns can be made from many materials, which are usually fabricated using out-of-mouth methods. Crowns are often used to improve the strength or appearance of teeth. Full-porcelain (ceramic) dental materials include porcelain, ceramic or glasslike fillings and crowns (a.k.a jacket crown, as a metal free option).