All about titanium dental implants
Everything you need to know about titanium dental implants.
Written by NoFrills Dental
This dental article has been curated by the clinical team @ NoFrills Dental 🙂
November 6, 2021
In this article, we aim to educate you about the advantages of titanium implants and why having them is most definitely a good choice! Read on more to find out!
How do dental implants osseointegrate into bone?
If you have been doing extensive research on the Internet about getting an implant, you may have come across the word “osseointegration”.
The objective of a dental implant is to place a titanium screw into your jawbone. These titanium screws are surface treated to allow it to fuse and form anchorage (osseointegration) into your jawbone under all normal conditions of oral function. Above this titanium screw lies another screw attachment which allows your implant crown or prosthesis to attach on top of.
When the sterile titanium screw is surgically inserted into the jawbone, the titanium oxide (TiO2) layer on its surface provides an area to which mineralizing bone matrix can attach. Once the implant is introduced into the jawbone, proteins from the patient’s blood are exposed to the surface almost immediately. The body recognizes the implant as its own rather than a foreign body, leading to osseointegration.
Why use titanium dental implants?
Titanium dental implants have been used for many decades. There is a vast body of scientific evidence and many clinical cases that support the use of titanium implants in adults. Furthermore, with a 95% success rate and positive patient feedback, a high level of trust regarding the performance of many titanium implants have been gained over the past few years.
We have compiled a comprehensive list on why you should have confidence in titanium as material of choice for your dental implant:
Titanium is VERY strong
One of the main functions of our teeth is to chew food. We exert a lot of pressure and force when chewing so it is important for the implant to be as strong as possible, so that it can withstand a variety of functional forces. It is tough and cannot warp, bend or buckle when pressure is exerted onto the tooth.
Titanium is corrosion resistant
Many teeth cleaning products such as toothpastes and mouthwashes contain compounds with fluoride and chlorine in them which do not corrode titanium. Titanium forms a passive oxide layer when it comes into contact with oxygen in the mouth which makes it corrosion resistant. It exhibits excellent biocompatibility with the bone and gum tissues.
Titanium is durable
Titanium has the highest strength to weight ratio known to all metals. It is very resistant to bending, cracking, and has a good scratch resistance. With titanium, implant fractures are rare, making it a solution in a vast array of cases where resistance of the material is crucial.
Most importantly, titanium is the most cost-effective implant choice in the long run as it can last you many decades, if not a lifetime!
Can you be allergic to titanium dental implants?
A potential drawback for titanium implants which may lead to failure are allergies or hypersensitivity reactions. There have been past reports of hypersensitive reactions such as erythema (skin rash), urticaria, eczema, swelling, pain and bone loss.
According to the International Congress of Oral Implantologists, it is rare that your body will reject your dental implant. Evidence has shown that less than 1% (0.6%) of potential dental implant recipients report an allergy to titanium.
Can I go for an MRI with a titanium dental implant?
MRIs generate detailed images of our body using strong magnetic fields and radio waves. They are used for the diagnosis, staging and follow-up of a wide range of diseases.
During an MRI appointment, you will be placed in a cylindrical machine and a wire is wound around this machine. When electricity flows through this wire, a magnetic field courses through this cylinder. The field is then applied to your body and the imaging apparatus captures the images in response to the magnetic field.
MRIs can react with magnetic objects such as iron, nickel, or cobalt. Titanium is a paramagnetic material. This means that they are weakly attracted to a magnetic field. You can rest assured that it is safe for a patient with a titanium dental implant to go for an MRI as titanium does not react with the MRI’s magnetic fields.
On the side of caution, it is best to let the radiologist know that you have a titanium implant, any crowns, dentures or bridges before getting your MRI done. Metal objects in the body may still affect the quality of the image although the risks of causing complications are extremely low.
Titanium is a long-lasting, durable, and cost-effective material to consider for dental implants. Once the bone has healed, these implants are typically permanent with proper care and regular cleaning. Choosing the right implant material is an important decision with many aspects to think about, and it is definitely worth speaking to your dentist about the plethora options and considerations moving forward!
- Zirconia vs. Titanium Implants: Which One Is Right for You? | Colgate® Oral Care. Colgate.com. https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/implants/zirconia-vs-titanium-implants-which-one-is-right-for-you. Accessed November 1, 2021.
- Mestas G, Alarcón M, Chambrone L. Long-Term Survival Rates of Titanium Implants Placed in Expanded Alveolar Ridges Using Split Crest Procedures: A Systematic Review. Int J Oral Maxillofac Implants. 2016:591-599. doi:10.11607/jomi.4453
- Dental Implants | Brighton Implant Clinic | Brighton. Brightonimplantclinic.co.uk. https://www.brightonimplantclinic.co.uk/advantages-titanium-tooth-implants/. Accessed November 1, 2021.
- Is it safe for someone with dental implants to go for MRI scans?. DoctorxDentist. https://www.doctorxdentist.com/questions/is-it-safe-for-someone-with-dental-implants-to-go-for-mri-scans. Accessed November 1, 2021.
- Kim K, Eo M, Nguyen T, Kim S. General review of titanium toxicity. Int J Implant Dent. 2019;5(1). doi:10.1186/s40729-019-0162-x
- Kim Y, Choi M, Kim J. Are titanium implants actually safe for magnetic resonance imaging examinations?. Arch Plast Surg. 2019;46(1):96-97. doi:10.5999/aps.2018.01466
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