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How Dental Implants Became What They Are Today

April 6, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — drlee @ 11:51 pm
3D render of a dental implant

Dental implants have become incredibly popular in recent years, owing to an incredible number of advancements in the field of dentistry. This treatment has quickly become one of the most durable and effective methods of replacing teeth, allowing patients of all stripes to get a smile that will last a lifetime.

However, they weren’t always this effective. If you’re interested in learning more about what this treatment used to look like, and how it’s changed over the years, here’s a brief history of this fascinating procedure.

Ancient Implants

The idea of dental implants is far from a new one; archaeologists have found records of ancient Mayans using carved stones and fragments of seashells to replace teeth as far back as 600 C.E. In fact, some of these early implants were even able to fuse to the bone!

Similar records were found of the ancient Egyptians replacing teeth with small metal rods, the first use of metal in implants.

Early Modern Implants

By the early modern era, metal had emerged as the most common material to construct dental implants from. However, these metals weren’t as advanced as the ones used now; they typically used gold, silver, and other alloys. While these metals were durable, they lacked a bit in what they could achieve in terms of tooth replacement.

Replacement teeth were also in their infancy, with many pontics being actual teeth pulled from cadavers.

Implants into Today

Perhaps the most significant development in the history of dental implants occurred in 1952, owing to the accomplishments of Dr. Per-Ingvar Branemark. It was him who discovered the biocompatibility of titanium, a substance that has the unique ability to fuse with bone tissue. When applied to dental implants, this allows greater strength and stability from implants of all kinds.

Dr. Branemark completed the first titanium implant surgery in 1965, but it wasn’t until the early 80s that his research became well-known.

Dental implants began to surge in popularity due to their newfound stability, which was known as the “dental implant revolution.” This leads us to today, where this treatment is one of the most celebrated methods of replacing a tooth.

About the Author

Dr. Jeff Lee has a deep passion for his field. Not only does he love learning more about the dental treatments he offers, he also finds it enormously gratifying to use his extensive knowledge to help his patients smile their brightest. Dr. Lee received his dental degree from the The Ohio State University College of Dentistry, and completed his four year residency in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center before honing his dental skills as a part of the US Navy Dental Corps.

If you have any questions about dental implants, we can be reached at our website or by phone at (740) 236-9392.

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