Researchers Examine New Materials for Dental Implants
Dental implants are one of the great innovations of modern dentistry, and they are the most durable, comfortable and natural-looking solution for replacing missing teeth. But that doesn’t mean experts aren’t searching for ways to make them better.
Stronger Dental Implants?
Researchers at the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC) are currently working on dental implants made of a ceramic-polymer blend that they believe will reduce the cost and enhance the strength of future implants.
Today’s dental implants feature titanium bases—the implants themselves—that are inserted into the jawbone. The bone fuses around the implants and anchors them in place; the implants act as replacement roots for the dental crowns that top them and serve as your teeth. Titanium is effective for a number of reasons, including its strength and the fact that it causes no adverse reactions in the body. With proper care, dental implants can provide a lifelong solution to missing teeth.
The UABC team, however, say their still-in-development dental implants may be even better than existing implants. One of the keys, they believe, is in a Vitamin D-based coating applied to the implant device in order to stimulate the production of bone tissue around the implant. Researchers also hope the implants could be produced at a lower cost than titanium.
The Future Looks Bright
The team is currently working on optimizing the performance of the future-generation implants amid tests that simulate the repetitive force of biting and chewing. Effective dental implants must ensure that the stresses of mastication are absorbed by the implant devices and not the bone structure.
The ceramic-polymer implants have yet to be compared with existing implants and are a long way from being available to patients. But one thing is sure: For patients who suffer from the effects of missing teeth, the future is bright. And the future is now.
Modern dental implants look, feel and perform just like healthy, natural teeth. Dental implants have proven their effectiveness for decades, and millions of people worldwide have benefited from replacing their missing teeth with dental implants. Untreated, missing teeth can progressively contribute to severe oral health problems, including periodontal disease, shifting teeth, and bone loss.
If you live in the greater Colorado Springs area and would like to learn more about your choices for restoring a vibrant, healthy smile, please contact The Studio for Exceptional Dentistry online or call us at 709-602-2614 to schedule your consultation with Dr. Andrew Hall.