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November/December 2022
Volume 43, Issue 10

CEREC MTL™ Zirconia: Ideal Combination of Strength and Esthetics

As a long-time tester, instructor, and user of CEREC® and CAD/CAM dentistry, Daniel Butterman, DDS, is convinced zirconia is here to stay. "When I started with CEREC [in 2010], we had only glass-ceramics for posterior restorations," says the Centennial, Colorado, practitioner. "That required a more aggressive preparation of the tooth for crown-and-bridge procedures. Eventually, zirconia was introduced, but it was either strong and opaque/unesthetic, or weaker and more translucent."

"CEREC MTL Zirconia [by Dentsply Sirona and VITA] is the first zirconia that has the unique combination of both high strength and high translucency/esthetics," Butterman states. "Due to the small-diameter tools used to mill MTL and the material shrinking during sintering, the fit and precision of MTL is excellent."

A frequent speaker on CAD/CAM and implants-and a big fan of single-visit crown-and-bridge dentistry-Butterman admits he was surprised at the level of esthetics that could be achieved in both anterior and posterior restorations with a minimal material thickness and such high strength. "At only 0.6 mm thickness requirement, less tooth structure needs to be removed. MTL has also become my material of choice for implant abutment suprastructures."

Butterman, who has been in practice since 1994, says he has always welcomed in any new technology that makes his treatments better, faster, easier, more profitable-and more enjoyable. "CEREC MTL Zirconia can be milled very quickly in less than 5 minutes. The material is soft enough in the green state to allow for more than 80 restorations to be milled on ‘super fast' before a tool needs to be changed in the mill," he affirms. "Because of the occlusal minimal thickness of only 0.6 mm compared to 1 mm for other similar-looking zirconias, the design proposals are much better." He adds that shade matching is also much easier because MTL is "perfectly matched" to the VITA shade guide.

Additionally, Butterman finds that zirconia bridges are easy to design with CEREC MTL Zirconia. "Due to the higher strength [>850 MPa], the connector size between the pontic and retainer crown can be only 9 mm2 in the anterior and 12 mm2 in the posterior. This means that bridges are more natural looking and not as bulky as with other zirconia that requires a larger connector size," he explains.

"Patients love the shorter appointments due to the quick milling and oven sinter times," he adds, noting that most MTL crowns can be done in less than 75 minutes. "Patients also experience less sensitivity because we do not over-reduce their teeth to compensate for material thickness. And they appreciate that their crown matches their natural teeth."

"With CEREC MTL Zirconia, we finally have everything we need to deliver a perfectly fitting restoration that excels in both strength and esthetics," Butterman summarizes.

Daniel Butterman, DDS
Private Practice, Centennial, Colorado; Fellow, International Congress of Oral Implantologists; 
Paid Consultant for Dentsply Sirona

Dentsply Sirona

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