What Makes up Dental Implants

Posted on: 12 September 2017


Dental implants are artificial roots which are fixed into a person's jaw to hold a replacement bridge or tooth. These are considered as good options for individuals who have lost a tooth or teeth due to diseases or injuries. The dental implants are made from two main types of materials which are considered safe and durable therefore requiring minimal dentist visits after implantations.  The materials used to create the dental implants include; Zirconium and Titanium.

  1. Zirconium -- Zirconium is also considered as the metal free option for dental implants for the people who have concerns and worries about the presence of metals in their bodies. Some of the individuals in this category include those with a prevalence of nickel allergy and therefore cannot use the Titanium dental implants. Zirconium is only a row below Titanium in the periodic table. The material is used in the dental field to come up with impure Zirconium Oxide that has traces of Hafnium. The formed oxide is then combined with Yttrium to improve both its chemical and physical properties. This results in the formation of a white and opaque product which resembles ceramic that can, therefore, be used as dental implants. The material formed from this is quite tough and hard making it entirely applicable in the construction of tooth crowns and jaw bridges. Some of the advantages of Zirconium dental implants include the absence of a dark metal colour which shows through the gums, the lack of corrosion and the absence of piezoelectric currents between different metals in the mouth. Lastly, Zirconia is thermally nonconductive meaning that the user will not experience any uncomfortable temperature fluctuations in the buccal cavity.
  2. Titanium – Titanium is also another dental implant material which has been in use for quite a long time in the profession. This became the successor of vitreous carbon which was brittle and rendered impractical for dental implants. The reasons as to why Titanium has been able to remain relevant in the profession is because of the physical and chemical properties which make it both practical and predictable as an implant material. The very first implants made from Titanium were pure. However, this made them too soft calling for the addition of an alloy that would thwart all these adverse properties. The benefits of the titanium implants are that they are versatile as they can be made to either one or two piece systems. The two piece system means that the implant will be capable of replacing the root. This is placed at the level of the underlying bone. Attached to the system is an abutment which sticks through the gum and is used to support of the replaced teeth.