Westlake Village, CA
Dental implants may be a relatively recent option for tooth replacement, but they have quickly become one of the most popular. Even with all of the technological developments in traditional bridges and dentures, dental implants offer a host of benefits over these restorations. Dental implants have seen many developments since their conception, and there are now many different types of dental implants to suit a variety of different needs. At Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery we offer many of these options, including Zirconia implants.
Dental implants are a solution for replacing missing teeth. They involve a surgical procedure during which the implants are inserted into the jawbone. Typically, they consist of small rods made of titanium. The use of this material dates back to the 1950s, when a Swedish orthopedic surgeon discovered, through research on bone regeneration and healing, that bone fuses to it. After further research, this same surgeon successfully used titanium as a means to restore missing teeth. Today, titanium implants are a titanium alloy, a strong material that, with successful fusion, provide a stable root for replacement crowns
While titanium implants yield a 98% success rate, they are made of metal. Many patients have concerns over the use of metal. Some may be allergic. This has led to further research into a metal-free implant and the discovery of Zirconia. Zirconia implants come in the form of zirconium oxide. It is considered a ceramic implant and is white in color like your natural teeth. While considered ceramic, Zirconia implants do contain trace metals that help to improve their strength. Bone fuses to these implants much as it would fuse to titanium, and the material is strong and stable.
The Advantages of Zirconia
There are many advantages associated with Zirconia implants. Many of these advantages are similar to those associated with traditional titanium implants. They are durable and stable, providing support for your replacement teeth. They are more natural and more comfortable than other options for tooth replacement. Moreover, because they are implanted into the jaw, they help to stop the bone loss that typically follows tooth loss.
There are also several benefits that are unique to Zirconia implants. One of the most obvious benefits is their color. For patients with thin gums, or who are prone to gum recession, the silver of titanium implants becomes obvious. Because Zirconia implants match the color of your ceramic crowns, and your natural teeth, they will not become obvious.
Zirconia implants are biocompatible, and facilitate optimal osseointegration with the jawbone. They are ideal for tooth loss patients who have metal allergies. The material is corrosion resistant and will not trigger chemical reactions. It does not conduct an electrical charge, making bacterial adhesion less likely.
Are There Any Downsides?
While Zirconia implants do offer a host of benefits, there are some downsides that need to be considered. One of the biggest disadvantages of Zirconia implants is that they are only available in a single piece, unlike titanium implants, which have the post and the abutment. Because they are a single piece, they need to be precisely placed and placed in areas with sufficient bone mass. Moreover, because they are a single piece, the replacement teeth need to be cemented in place rather than set in place with screws.
In the event of tooth loss, know that you have options. To find out if Zirconia implants are the right solution for you, call Westlake Oral Surgery at (805) 267-9766 to schedule your consultation today.