I’ve had my dental implants for almost 20 years. I know there have been some advancements in dental implants and there are now the metal-free kind. I think I might be better off switching to the metal-free ones. I’ve read they are better for my health. Is there anything I need to know in order to do this right?
While you are perfectly within your rights to change out your dental implants for the metal-free implants, I want to make sure you understand what it would require first.
Replacing Dental Implants
In order to replace dental implants, they have to be removed, which will take bone structure with it. That bone is absolutely necessary in order for whatever implants you place next to have retention. To get that bone, you will need a bone grafting procedure. This will build back up the bone so your dental implant will be secure. After that is healed, you can then have the new dental implants placed. Again, you will need another period of healing and then, when the bone has had time to integrate with the implant you can have the dental crowns placed. There is a risk with this. When you add an additional surgery, especially after losing some bone, then it is possible the second set of implants will fail.
Titanium versus Zirconia Dental Implants
There have been several “natural news” sites that have made patients uncomfortable with the idea of metal in their bodies, saying that it can cause neurological problems. First, let me say there is absolutely zero evidence that titanium causes problems. In fact, it is extraordinarily biocompatible and has been safely used in prosthetics for decades.
As for the risk of metal in your body, it really depends on the type of metal. You wouldn’t want mercury, but your body is loaded with metals naturally that you need to survive, such as iron. Titanium is inert and quite safe.
It is totally up to you whether or not you switch, I just want to make sure you do it for the right reasons. If you’re asking an opinion, and it is only an opinion, if it were me I would wait. While your current dental implants are functional, I would keep them and then switch after they have lived out their usefulness., then switch to the metal-free version if y0u’d like.
This blog is brought to you by Decatur, AL Dentists Drs. Drake and Wallace.