Dental implants have been used in dental practices for more than 60 years. They were created for patients with missing teeth to be able to have prosthetic teeth surgically installed in the mouth that perform as well or better than regular teeth. Traditionally, they are made up of three separate parts.
- The crown is the visible piece that resembles the tooth
- The base is a screw that is inserted through the gum into the jaw bone and fuses with it to be permanent
- The connector or abutment, which is the piece that connects the crown and base together.
An experienced oral surgeon performs minor surgery to put the base in, after this is healed a second minor surgery is performed attaching the connector to the base, and finally the crown is placed on top.
Today dental implants must be strong and durable so there are essentially two materials that these implants are made from Zirconia and Titanium.
Titanium without a doubt has always been essential for dental work. For the base especially, titanium is able to fuse easier with the bone than with other metals. It is also a very strong metal which will last for many years. Titanium is so effective for use in the medical industry that is is also commonly found in the knee and hip replacements, and other prosthetics as well. It is non-toxic for the human body. In some very rare cases some people can have a minor allergy to titanium, but by far this is the most used material for dental implants. With all surgeries there is a risk for infection if the site of the surgery is not properly cared for and cleaned during and after the procedure.
Zirconia is a much newer material in the surgical and medical industry. It is proving to be one of the most promising new materials for versatility and strength. In 2007 it was first released for implant use in the US and has taken off in popularity. With the rise of Zirconia they have begun making the base and abutment (previously two pieces) as one piece. Zirconia is actually a stone similar to diamond, but the color is altered to match the color of the teeth. It contains no metals and is marketed in this way.
Both types of dental implants require minor surgery and post-operation care. After the implants have fused with the bone and healed, one must be extra careful to take care of their teeth, both the real ones and the implants. Flossing daily, thorough brushing, and staying away from sugary foods or chewing hard candies can help improve dental health. By visiting regularly with your local dentist you can continuously monitor the health of your dental implants.
If you are in need of dental implants or would like to learn more contact: Glendale Boutique Dental, 68-35 Myrtle Ave, Glendale, NY 11385, (718) 821-0170