The professional blog of Doctors Dan Bruce, Steve Bruce, Rosa Pothier and Rob Ririe
Porcelain crowns vs. metal crowns
All ceramic crowns can either be made without a core, which is called a porcelain jacket crown. These crowns rely on the bond between the underlying tooth and porcelain for strength. Other porcelain crowns have a ceramic core, such as alumina or zirconia. These cores are incredibly strong, and do not need as much opaque porcelain to cover them.
Porcelain/metal crowns still have their place in dentistry. All-ceramic crowns provide great esthetics and show promise for long-term results, but we do not have the years of data associated with porcelain/metal crowns. There are many factors associated with crown choice - biting force, area of the mouth, and surrounding colors of the other teeth are just a few.
I use both all-ceramic and porcelain/metal crowns (And even gold crowns when indicated). The most important thing to do when selecting a crown material is to ask your dentist what your situation is and let them know your concerns.