For a long time, metals have been a crucial asset for dentistry. Hence, we can trace the earliest uses of metal in dental implants and as prosthetics back to ancient Egyptians. For dentists, metals have proven to be irreplaceable, securing their place even today. Although the treatment and the metal usage have improved tremendously, the core remains unshaken: dentists treasure metal implants and fillings. Why is that? What are the metals dentists use in implants? Let’s explore these questions in this article.
Metal Qualities That Make Them Suitable For Fillings And Implants:
Dentists can’t just fix a random metal into your body without knowing its risks, right? Therefore, after going over thorough research, only then is a metal deemed worthy of being placed into a human body. Here are a few properties that researchers look for in a metal:
- Elasticity: The moduli of implant metal must be similar to the bone. This will ensure a uniform stress distribution and also limit mobility at bone and implant junctions.
- Strength: Nobody wants a feeble implant in their body. Therefore, the metal’s strength is of utmost significance. The metal should be able to withstand stress without causing any distortion or fracture.
- Non-Corrosive: Corrosion undermines the implant’s durability, making it precarious for the surrounding tissues. Consequently, the inertness of metal gives it a higher chance to be considered when choosing a suitable metal.
Metals For Implants:
Titanium And Titanium Alloy:
Implants featuring titanium and its alloys have been in the market for over 30 years, awarding them the title of “gold standard” for implants. Titanium has gained the trust and stood the test of time for several
reasons, such as:
- High strength.
- Rapid formation.
- Ability to repair itself.
- Similar elasticity to the bone.
- Resistant to chemical attacks and corrosion.
Moreover, the addition of other metals enhances the properties of titanium, making it a much more favorable alloy to opt for. For example, aluminum amplifies the implant’s strength while making it lightweight. At the same time, iron and vanadium inclusion bring higher corrosion resistance to the mix. Due to these favorable qualities, the majority of implants consist of titanium and its alloys. Nevertheless, nothing comes without its drawbacks, and the same goes for this metal. First of all, titanium doesn’t match the color of your bone or tissue, allowing the steely gray color of this metal to be visible from the gums. Moreover, some individuals reported hypersensitivity to this metal, resulting in an implant failure.
Although titanium implants serve us well, we are also considering Zirconium implants as they are equally compatible with your bone, just like titanium. However, Zirconium gives the implant an edge because its color easily blends in with the surrounding tissues, making them less noticeable to others. Furthermore, opting for Zirconium eliminates the patient’s concerns for metal allergies and tooth sensitivity. Nonetheless, Zirconium implants are relatively new, making it harder to assess their risks fully until further research is done.
While the world is looking for better implant materials, we know one thing for sure: No metal out there can ever replace your natural teeth. Hence, take good care of them. A regular dental checkup at Bayside Dental will help you maintain an excellent oral hygiene routine.