Evolution of Tooth Implants

While mankind has been losing their teeth for all of time, doctors, for as long a time, have been searching for a way to permanently replace them. Archeologists have discovered that the Ancient Egyptians tried to replace missing teeth with gemstones, placed into the jawbone.

The Mayans chose to replace them with carved shells. Thankfully, the methods of replacing teeth have evolved in time and today there is a much more permanent solution. In fact, the last 15 years have seen a trio of huge advancements in this field of implantology. So if you’ve lost a tooth, where does that leave you today?

Advancements with Dental Implants

Tooth implantation is a safe and effective means to leave you with a brilliant and toothy smile. Investigators have discovered methods that are both natural and efficient to make your smile last a lifetime. The first advancement came in the form of an anchor post. In place of the tooth’s roots, an anchor post is inserted into the jawbone and allowed to heal.

Onto this post or posts, the dentist is able to affix a false tooth, denture plate, or bridge. Modern improvements now see that anchor posts are made of titanium, a metal which is both nontoxic and extremely durable. The titanium posts are also well-suited with the mouth’s biology, causing far less adverse reactions.

With the Process of Osseointegration

A further advancement is the discovery of osseointegration. Osseointegration is when the jawbone heals around the anchor post and fuses with the implant. It becomes one with the jaw, much like roots of the teeth are naturally a part of the jaw. The tissue of the bone is protected in this process, and the risk of infection is dramatically lowered. The titanium post is now a permanent fixture in the mouth.

Computer Technology Also Helps

The last breakthrough makes the process of implantation more painless and much more available to a wider range of people. A model of the jawbone is created through Computerized Tomography (CT). The model makes it possible to know exactly where the post or posts need to be inserted. Before the use of CT, a preliminary surgery was often needed to create an impression of the jawbone. In most cases, Computerized Tomography has made the preliminary surgery obsolete and made the implantation surgery one-step, more streamlined, and less painful.

These huge advancements have made the implantation process more available and almost pain-free. More natural methods, combined with the need for less surgery, makes implantation a viable option with less harmful side effects. Thanks to the efforts of investigators, people no longer have to live without teeth, but instead have a safe means to attain a great smile.

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