Advancements in Implant Dentistry

Oct 01, 2019

The dental implants are considered as one of the best options for replacing a missing tooth because of various reasons. However, dentistry is evolving and with it the treatments are also evolving. Dental implants and its procedures have also evolved over the time.

For example, the process of osseointegration i.e. merging of an implant with the jawbone is no longer relevant. The long-term stability and health of the implant, prosthesis, and peri-implant tissue are the most desirable outcomes for implant therapy. The new advances have been introduced in the form of a fixed provisional prosthesis which offers implant patients an improved sense of esthetics and function during the osseointegration period.

Recent Trends in Implant Dentistry

The dental implants have greatly evolved in the past 20 years. The modern-day techniques of dental implantation are quite successful and painless as compared to the attempts that were made some 3000 years ago when the copper peg was used for replacing the lost tooth structure. In the mid-1960s, it was discovered by Dr. Per- Ingvar Branemark in Sweden that bone could grow in proximity with titanium without being rejected. He termed this process as ‘osseointegration’. The stability of osseointegration implants may depend upon:

  • The percentage of bone-to-implant contact
  • Whether the new bone deposited on the implant surface is attached to the surrounding bone accurately or not
  • Bone density of the surrounding bone

Advances in Implant Material

According to the Mesa dentist near me, in the past decade, research and observations have brought a paradigm shift in implants. Instead of focusing on topographical features and surface roughness, the new perspective of wetting properties is taken into consideration.

Ceramic Implants

The dentist in Mesa says that ceramics used for implants are quite inert in the body and showcase minimal ion release. Aluminum oxide is regarded by many as standard inert material. This is because the remodeling of bony tissues adjacent to its surface is not changed by the presence of ions released or by the immune reactions. The ceramic surface is thermodynamically stable in a high oxidation state. Under normal conditions, aluminum oxide or zirconium oxide release minimum ion.

Zirconia is used in Implantology because of its biocompatibility, great esthetic appeal, and mechanical properties which are said to be better than alumina. Also, they are resistant to corrosion.

Advances in Forms and Shape

Mini implants have also become quite popular. They are small diameter implants used widely across the globe. They are a separate class of implants. Some mini-implants are used as anchors in orthodontic cases and hence termed as temporary anchorage devices. The pullout strength of the implant is based on its length than its diameter. You can find multiple designs available in this category as well. The majority of the tip designs are sharp or blunted to offer the self-tapping ability of the implants.

The thread designs vary from thin to thick and spacing may also be different. These variations allow using implants in different densities of bone. Fixed crowns or bridges can be cemented directly to the cubic head of mini implants.

Transitional Implants

According to Dr. Karl Baker, the diameter of these implants’ ranges from 1.8 to 2.8mm and the length ranges from 7 to 14mm. The transitional implant is made with pure titanium in a single body with a treated surface. Their main job is to absorb the masticatory stress during the healing phase and making sure that the bone and implant healing is stress-free.

One-Piece Implants

This type of implant has an abutment and implant body in one piece instead of being separate. They come in 3mm diameter and 12, 15, or 18 mm length. They have a minimum profile yet offer maximum strength. They are strong and also slow placement in areas of limited tooth-to-tooth spacing. These implants need minimal surgery and offer higher esthetic appeal. The soft tissue experiences fewer traumas than the two-stage protocols.

A lot has changed in the implant dentistry. What has remained constant is that implants even today is the best options for tooth replacement. They are esthetically appealing, durable, and feel natural in your mouth. They are so popular because they help in overcoming the shortcomings of other tooth-replacement methods such as bridges and dentures.

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