06 Jun 12 Fun Facts About Dental Implants
Dental implants can feel like a scary procedure, filled with unknowns. That’s why it’s important to know as much as you can. Getting the facts — both the procedural facts and the interesting information — can help make you feel more relaxed and well-informed.
Talk to your dentist about your specific situation and what you can expect during your dental implant procedure. For now, enjoy these fun and interesting facts and learn more about dental implants.
Implants are Similar to Spaceships
Dental implants and spaceships have something in common. They’re both made from titanium. That’s right, the implant in your mouth will be as strong as the rockets that head to Mars and beyond.
Dental Implants are Old
Back as far as 2500 BCE, people have been trying to fix their teeth with mechanical means. But in 2000 BCE, in ancient China, missing teeth were replaced with bamboo. The Mayans, in 600 AD, used a hammer and seashells as rudimentary dental implants.
People Used to Buy Other People’s Teeth
During the early days of dental implants, think 1500 to 1800 or so, a patient who wanted to replace a missing tooth bought loose teeth from the poor or took them from cadavers. It should come as no surprise that these “implants” didn’t work well.
The 1960s were a Good Time for Dental Implants
While experiments with dental implants were going on in the 1930s and 1950s, real progress didn’t happen until about 1965. That’s when titanium was first used and the benefits the spaceship-like material were first documented.
No More Cavities
Unlike your natural teeth, dental implants can’t get cavities. Once you have implants, you won’t have any more fillings and definitely no more tooth pain. Of course, you still have to take care of your original teeth because those can definitely still get a cavity.
Your Jaw Bone Gets Stronger
When the implant is put into your mouth, the bone fuses to the titanium rod. This is a process called osseointegration. As the bone and implant grow together, your jaw bone becomes stronger.
They Can Last a Long Time
Unlike dentures that have to be replaced every decade or so, dental implants can potentially last the rest of your life. As long as you take care of them with brushing, flossing, and regular check-ups, you won’t have to replace them.
It’s Easier Than Pulling a Tooth
Getting dental implants sounds invasive, and it is definitely a form of dental surgery. But it’s easier to insert an implant than it is to pull a tooth. A great deal of pressure and force are used to move the tooth and pull it out.
It’s Less Painful Than Pulling a Tooth
When your tooth is pulled out, a large surface area is affected. But inserting an implant is much more precise and tends to be less painful. You’re given pain medication and sedation during the procedure, of course, so you can stay relaxed and not feel anything.
They Can Look Like Your Natural Teeth
Dental implants are designed to look just like your natural teeth. That’s why you can replace just one and still have your usual smile. This is also why you can replace all your teeth with dental implants, and your smile still looks natural.
Lots of People Have Them
More than three million people currently have dental implants and counting, as more than 500,000 get an implant each year. It’s a procedure that’s becoming more and and more common.
Most People Have a Good Outcome
Not everything has a 98 percent success rate, but dental implants do. Most people are good candidates for the procedure, and there is no age limit for them. Follow your dentist’s advice and take care of your dental implants, and your implants will likely have the same results.
If you’re going to get dental implants, it’s important to know as much as possible. Although the procedure is completely safe and most people have wonderful outcomes, it’s normal to be nervous about it. The more you know, the more confident you can feel when you schedule your implant procedure. Feel free to ask your dentist all the questions you have about getting implants. A good dentist will be happy to give you all the information you need so you feel comfortable moving forward.