Lithium disilicate is a glass ceramic material and is one of the most commonly used materials for monolithic crowns, bridges, veneers, inlays, onlays, implant suprastructures.This material is composed of Lithium dioxide, Quartz, Alumina, Phosphor oxide, Potassium oxide and Trace elements. The restorations made of this material are highly esthetic matching the esthetic characteristics of the natural teeth almost perfectly which makes this material extremely good for anterior restorations. Currently Lithium disilicate is one of the most esthetic materials used in dentistry as it contains a very high translucency that provides a chameleon effect. And for this reason, lithium disilicate is superior in esthetics compared to zirconia. This material is almost 3 times stronger than other glass ceramic materials, thus it can also be used for very thin restorations mainly because of its strong resistance to chipping. The restorations done with lithium disilicate have longer durability. It is also quite adequately perfect for thin veneers from (0.3mm), minimally invasive crowns, minimally invasive inlays and Onlays. With the minimally invasive operation, the dentist is certain to save huge amount of tissue and avoid any damage to the pulp.
However, Lithium disilicate is ideal for no-prep esthetic veneers because of its relative high strength coupled with the different available translucency levels which provides almost the “perfect “esthetic restorations. Lithium disilicate can either be milled with the CAD/CAM technology from a block form, or it can also be pressed from an ingot. Companies often offer ingots with different opacities depending on the type of treatment plan. There are High opacity, Medium opacity, Low translucency High translucency ingot. The selection of an opacity depends largely on the type of preparation and the look of the natural teeth. With the CAD/CAM technology, the whole restoration is digitally designed. Restorations made of lithium disilicate can be veneered to highly-esthetic ones, or they can be high-quality monolithic restorations, so the material offers both options. This material boasts with versatility on the market in the form of adhesive, self-adhesive or conventional techniques for cementation. Its main strength is that it offers high-quality full contoured restorations made from only one material, avoiding the mix of two different materials. In addition, Lithium disilicate can also be used with the hybrid design approach where it is veneered with a nano-fluorapatite porcelain.