Most dental implants today are made of titanium. There are numerous reasons why titanium is a great fit for creating implants. The most important of these is called biointegration, whereby the titanium in the implant screw fuses with the bone itself. To help this process along, many titanium implants are coated with hydroxyapatite. Hydroxyapatite is part of the composition of the bone itself, making it easier for the body to connect the bone with the implant. Titanium is the only metal that can completely integrate with the body, causing the bone to grow around it. This process is known as osseointegration. Implants also need to be resistant to the circumstance around them. To that end, the titanium resists corrosion by forming a thin film on its surface for this very purpose. The implant needs to be extremely strong, without being overly weighty. Once again, this is a quality for which titanium is well renowned.
Dental implants come in many different types of surfaces. There is acid etched, plasma sprayed, grit blasted, and, of course, hydroxyapatite-coated dental implants. Based on the needs of the patient, we will help you to select the best implant for your particular situation, and decide what surface type will heal the fastest and be most efficient. There are also several different types of implants.
Here are some of the basics –
Endosseous Dental Implants, which are also known as endosteal implants or root-form implants, are placed directly into the bone. These implants are most often what people think of when they consider a dental implant. Formed in the shape of a screw or nail, they can also be cone shaped based on the needs of the mouth. Typically in order for these to be effective there has to be very little bone loss since the dental implant is going to be inserted directly into the bone. The bone is then responsible for providing stability and a secure foundation. Endosseous implants are usually inserted in a two-stage process. The first stage is to bury the implant in the gum tissue for a period of time, often several months, and then expose them during a second surgical procedure like installing a crown. Sometimes, however, we may insert these root-form implants in a single procedure.
Ramus-Frame dental implants are designed for people whose lower jawbone is too thin, or too weak, to withstand a traditional root-form implant. In this installation, the dental implant is embedded in the jawbone near the back corners of the mouth. By inserting the implant near the wisdom teeth and chin, the implant has a great deal more strength. A thin metal bar is visible for us to then attach dentures to. Ramus-Frame implants are often used to stabilize weak jaws that have a risk of fracturing and the results are durable and natural looking.
Blade-Form implants are a type of endosseous implant, except they use a flat rectangular piece of metal instead of the cone shaped devices in root-form dental implants. The flat rectangular metal has one or two metal prongs that stick out into the mouth, once the implant is installed in the jaw so that a crown or a bridge can be attached to them.
We can discuss all of these options in further detail when you visit our dental office for a consultation.
Call our Leawood, KS, dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.