Runar D. Johnson, D.D.S.
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Zirconium Implants

Z3-310 - Z-Look3 ImplantTraditionally, lost teeth were replaced with bridges or dentures. However, this meant that natural tooth substance had to be removed to place bridges, often jeopardizing the health of the surrounding teeth. Dentures on the other hand can be uncomfortable and ill-fitting. After removal of teeth the jawbone has the tendency to recede.

In 1964, implants finally revolutionized dentistry making tooth replacement possible without damage to neighboring teeth and offering denture patients stability and comfort.

The material of choice seemed to be titanium due to its mechanical and biological properties, therefore, compatible with most people. However, it has been proven that the immune system has an unfavorable reaction to the metal. Furthermore, it is being discussed that the use of dental alloys will increase the allergy rate significantly.

Ceramic materials seem to be the ideal replacement for metals due to their superior cosmetic and organic properties. Zirconium dioxide combines biocompatibility with mechanical properties well beyond that of titanium. In the mid-90’s the first zirconium dental implant was developed in Switzerland. Since 2004 implants have been certified in Europe and used in over 2000 patients.

Advantages over titanium:

~ Zirconium dioxide is not readily reactive with other elements forming few or no chemical compounds.
~ Zirconium dioxide is white in contrast to titanium, which is grey making it cosmetically pleasing.
~ Plaque adhesion to zirconium dioxide is nearly non-existent. By contrast, plaque adhesion to polished titanium is extremely high.
~ Gums react very well to zirconium dioxide. This is generally a problem with titanium due to the release of free radicals, which are believed to play a major role in gum disease.

What is involved?

First, it is determined whether or not you are a candidate for an implant. An implant cannot be placed if any of the following apply: taking a blood thinner (Coumadin or aspirin); a smoker; have an artificial joint (need to wait for 2 years or sooner with physician’s consent); osteoporosis; taking a bisphosphonate (Aclasta, Actonel, Aredia, Bonefos, Boniva, Didronel, Fosamax, Fosamax Plus D, Reclast, Skielid, Zometa).

We also need to determine if you have enough bone to qualify for an implant with a panorex x-ray. Once placed, there is a period of 4-6 months to allow the area to heal before placing a crown, bridge or denture. A splint is worn over the implant site to protect it during this time.

If interested, you may call our office to schedule a consultation.

These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosis or treatment of any health problem or for prescription of any medication or other treatment. You should consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem. All rights reserved.



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