125 W. Wisconsin Ave. • Suite 102 • Pewaukee, WI 53072 • 262.737.4004

Zirconia Dental Implants: A More Natural Solution for Missing Teeth

Titanium Vs. Zirconia Dental Implants 

Titanium is one of the most popular substances used in the medical and dental field. It’s used in hip replacements, knee replacements and even in dental implants. Over 95 percent of today’s dental implants are made of titanium alloy according to the Vancouver Centre for Implant Dentistry. In fact, they’ve been the standard in dental implant material since the 1960s.

Few people realize that now there is an alternative choice available for those looking for a more natural material both in appearance and in biocompatibility. Zirconia is catching on in popularity for those patients who value a more holistic approach to healthcare or for those concerned about metal allergies. Dr. Bryan Schwartz, DDS, of Whole Health Biomimetic and Biological Family Dentistry in Pewaukee, Wisconsin, prefers using zirconia implants in his practice because of their more natural material.

"Zirconia implants are actually made up of zirconia polycrystal and are impact resistant ceramic," he said. "These are a better choice for those concerned about the risk of having metal in your mouth that could cause a disruption to your body, especially in the presence of other metals such as silver or amalgam fillings." 

The Benefits of Zirconia Implants
For those patients seeking a metal-free solution to a missing tooth or teeth, zirconia is the only option at this time. However, the benefits of this material go beyond a more natural solution. Schwartz recommends zirconia for the following reasons:

  • Low-risk of allergic reaction
  • Non-corrosive
  • Stronger than titanium
  • Biocompatibility allows for the tissue to grow around the implant, eliminating the concern for receding gums
  • More aesthetically pleasing look
  • Naturally resist plaque

Why Replace Missing Teeth with Implants?
An estimated 178 million people in the United States alone are missing at least one tooth according to the American College of Prosthodontists. That number is expected to grow over the course of the next 20 years. The most common causes of tooth loss include gum disease, poor oral hygiene, trauma to the mouth and cancer.

"Replacing a tooth as soon as possible after loss occurs is imperative," said Schwartz. "When a tooth is lost, the rest of the teeth begin shifting to fill the space almost immediately. This can cause jaw misalignment which can lead to TMJ and as teeth shift closer together, it can become harder to keep them clean and free of food debris and plaque."

A less well-known side effect of missing teeth is facial changes. When a tooth is lost and not replaced from the root up, the jaw bone in that area is no longer stimulated. This leads to the jaw bone deteriorating over time. This is why dentists like Schwartz recommend implants instead of dentures which only replace the visible part of the tooth and don’t stimulate the jaw.

As jaw bone is lost, the face begins to lose its shape. One of the most noticeable changes is in the cheeks. They begin to take on a sunken in appearance and this can even lead to premature wrinkles according to the Implant Dentistry Institute. If tooth loss goes too long without treatment, the bone loss can be so severe that a bone graft may be needed before an implant can be placed.

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Tuesday, 18 June 2019

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