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Zirconium Dental Implants – A Ceramic Alternative to Titanium
However, those who would rather not have a metal product like titanium in their mouths or have concerns about possible risks of titanium can opt for zirconium dental implants.
Titanium – Associated Concerns
Titanium is said to be generally safe, but some doubts have been raised with regard to the use of titanium for medical purposes.
Titanium might slowly degrade and increase the concentration of the metal in the bloodstream. Concerns exist regarding possible long term affects of titanium in the blood.
Though a rare phenomenon, titanium implants may be rejected by the patient’s immune system.
Some forms of titanium are said to have a harmful effect on health. For instance, titanium tetrachloride is associated with skin irritation. It is also said to cause severe damage to the lungs if inhaled.
The Zirconium Advantage
Zirconium dental implants behave just like Zirconium dental implant. Zirconium is a ceramic substance that is white in colour, flexible, strong and is ideal for use as dental implant material.
This material is reported to be highly resistant to corrosion and is considered by some to be a better implant material than titanium. Zirconium implants are suitable for osseointegration process (integration with the natural bone) and are easily accepted by the body.
They are ideal for those patients whose immune systems do not accept titanium implants. Zirconium implants are also credited with a slightly higher integration success rate than titanium implants.
Zirconium implants have excellent tensile strength, so they are more durable with less risk of breakage. Moreover, the material is also capable of holding up to drastic changes in temperature.
Zirconium implants are said to be ideal for the posterior teeth that are subject to heavier chewing forces. These implants are also perfect for patients who may have allergic reactions towards metals.
Being white in colour, zirconium implants have a definite advantage or aesthetics over titanium dental implants. These will be welcome to those patients who don’t like the thought of a dark coloured implant. Any possibility of a gray colour like that of titanium showing through the gums is ruled out with zirconium implants.
Zirconium Dental Implants – Drawbacks
Zirconium is a radioactive material and might contain radioactive isotopes. However, the implants made of this material give out only a minute level of radio activity and are certified to be non-dangerous by the manufacturers. It is mandatory for companies that manufacture these implants to declare the radiation levels of the zirconium used.
They are substantially more costly than the titanium variety. Being new products, they have yet to establish a successful track record like their titanium counterparts.
Zirconium dental implants are undoubtedly a valuable addition in the fields of implantology and cosmetic dentistry. They are excellent options in instances where titanium dental implants cannot be used.
Their durability and outstanding performance make them ideal tooth replacement alternatives. Moreover, they are a boon to patients who are concerned about issues such as a build-up of titanium in the bloodstream. It is important that specialist implant dentists provide all required information to the patient regarding zirconium implants, so that the patient can make a well informed choice.