Metal-Free Dental Implants
Metal-Free implants are white in color and made from Zirconium Dioxide, usually referred to as “Zirconia”. They provide a very good alternative to individuals that are allergic to metals and provide excellent osseointegration (connect very well to surrounding bone). The white color of the implants provide improved esthetics over the dark nature of traditional titanium implants. This is especially pertinent for patients who have thin gingival coverage (thin gums) or patients who are prone to gingival recession and retraction.
Did you know…that some studies show that Zirconia implants result in less plaque build-up around the implant surface, promoting healthier gums?
Dental implants are surgical-grade root devices that support permanent tooth prosthetics or crowns. These artificial roots are anchored in the bone beneath the gums where they become fused into the jaw. A crown is mounted atop the implant for a long-lasting and natural looking smile. Many dentists and patients prefer dental implants because they offer the same function as natural teeth and also help prevent bone atrophy in the jaw. Dental implants may be used to replace a single missing or damaged tooth or to restore an entire smile.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who might be a good candidate for Metal-Free Implants?
- Patients who are allergic to metals.
- Patients who have thin “see-through” gums.
- Patients that are more likely to have gingival recession.
- Patients who desire metal-free restorations.
How well do metal-free Implants integrate?
Zirconia implants have shown integrate very well with surrounding bone and they initiate bone growth right on their surface. Their performance is similar to traditional titanium implants.
Are Zirconia implants strong?
Yes. Ceramic implants have shown to have a very high fatigue strength, biomechanical stability and fitting accuracy.
Being relatively new, do metal-free ceramic implants have FDA approval?
Yes. The FDA approved the first completely metal-free, screwed, two-piece implant system in July 2016.
What should I expect if my dentist and I decide dental implants are right for me?
The placement of dental implants is a multi-step process that typically takes between 6 and 9 months to complete. It begins with a surgical procedure during which a titanium rod is placed where a previous natural tooth root once was. The gums are sutured shut over the implant, where is will stay for several months while it heals and begins fusing with the surrounding bone. Due to the nature of implant placement and its average procedure time of between 1 and 2 hours, you’ll be sedated and/or anesthetized for the duration of the treatment. At the conclusion of the healing period, you’ll return to be fitted for permanent crowns and have them placed.
What type of post-treatment care will I require?
It is normal to experience some discomfort, including bruising and swelling following a dental implant procedure. However, inflammation and pain may be managed with over-the-counter medications, hydrocodone, or codeine. You may be asked to eat only soft foods for approximately 2 weeks until the surgical site heals.