I’m going to replace a tooth with a dental implant. It looks like there are two types: metal and non-metal. I like the idea of non-metal, but I’m worried they’re not as strong. Will they last as long?
The metal dental implants are made from titanium. They have a long track record and are very reliable. It’s what most dentists use.
The non-metal dental implants are made from zirconia. They haven’t been around as long. However, they are strong. In fact, they are nicknamed ceramic steel. Those who’ve used it have had no problems. Quite the opposite in fact. Metal-free dental implants have been a lifesaver for patients with metal sensitivities.
Succesful Dental Implants
What’s more important when it comes to dental implants is who places them. You want someone who can do both the surgery and the implant restoration. That cuts down opportunities for miscommunication errors which can happen when there are two practices involved in treatment. Periodontists have the surgical skill necessary.
All that being said, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. You’ll want to see a periodontist to ensure you are actually a good candidate. For instance, if you have gum disease you need to deal with that first. In fact, it should be your highest priority. Leaving it untreated will cost you more teeth.
The next consideration is if you have enough jaw bone. If you don’t, you can have bone grafting done to build it back up.
Finally, if you’re a smoker, you’ll want to consider either quitting or cutting back dramatically. It can lead to infection and dental implant failure. Infection is the leading reason implants fail so you want to give them the best chance possible. Smoking cuts down your blood flow which makes healing more difficult. It’s also one of the reasons smokers have a much higher case of gum disease than non-smokers.
This blog is brought to by Atlanta Periodontist Dr. David Pumphrey.