Titanium vs Ceramic Dental Implant
Along with the rise in popularity of dental implants – now the preferred technology in replacing one or multiple teeth by dentists and patients alike –an expansion of materials used in the process of creating them has also taken place. Today, there are more choices than ever to be made regarding the dental implants one has access to. This article will help outline some of the main advantages and disadvantages in two common types of dental implants: titanium and ceramic.
Titanium is the primary material that has been traditionally been used in the creation of dental implants. They are a tried-and-true technology that have proven to be strong, durable, and resistant to cracks and breaks. As they have been used since around 1960, they also have existed for enough time for dentists to be sure of how long they last, which is typically around twenty years. Rather than pure titanium, though, which has certain drawbacks, dentists use an alloy form that incorporates small amounts of other metals to increase strength; this can introduce problems for those who are either allergic or sensitive to those metals.
For those who do not suffer from metal allergies, titanium is an excellent choice due to its high degree of biocompatibility and strength. Dental implants made from titanium are constructed in separate parts, which means that the separate pieces have to be connected together once installed. While this may sound like a drawback it can actually be a real advantage, as it means that separate parts – typically the implant crown – can be replaced without removing the entire system if a repair is not possible.
Ceramic implants are a newer technology that came about in 2009. It was created as an alternative for those who have allergies or sensitivities to the metals present in titanium dental implants. As an added benefit, ceramic implants can be more aesthetically pleasing than their titanium counterparts; they are created in one solid piece and installed as such, which means that there are no flashes of metal that can peek out from below the bottom of the implant crown, as can happen with titanium implants.
This one-piece structure, while visually pleasing, is also more difficult to install and place properly, which – in addition to the added cost of the materials themselves – can add to the price of ceramic implants. They can also be more prone to breaks and cracks, though these are often simply enough repaired. Finally, because they are such a new technology, determining longevity of ceramic implants is difficult, as they haven’t yet stood the test of time that titanium implants have.
Benefits of Dental Implants
Whether one opts for titanium or ceramic implants, the benefits that this form of tooth replacement offers is virtually unparalleled. From increased bite strength to a much greater ability to enjoy a wide range of foods, all while avoiding the dreaded slipping and sliding of conventional dentures, dental implants are a preferred method of replacing teeth that you are sure to enjoy for decades. For more information on which type of dental implant is right for you, be sure to consult with your dentist for an individualized consultation and advice.