Titanium vs Ceramic Dental Implant

If you are missing one or more teeth, dental implants are an excellent way to restore your smile! A dental implant is a post that is surgically placed directly into the jawbone to support a dental prosthesis. A dental implant is essentially an artificial tooth root and also works to stimulate bone regeneration. When a tooth is missing, the root structure that promotes bone health is gone and can lead to bone deterioration in the area which in turn leads to more loose teeth and potentially additional lost teeth as well as changes in facial structure. This type of deterioration is common with traditional restorations such as dental bridges and dentures that sit on top of the gums.

Dental implants can be fabricated with either titanium or ceramic and can support a number of dental prosthesis from a single implant crown to a full denture on one or both arches. Titanium implants are composed of three pieces: the dental implant, an abutment on the implant, and the implant restoration. Ceramic implants are all one piece!

Titanium Implants vs Ceramic Implants

Titanium implants have been in use since the 1960s and are generally easier to place in ceramic implants. Titanium implants are more common with most Dentists because they are incredibly strong and resistant to fracture with a success rate between 95% and 97%.

Either a Periodontist or an Oral Surgeon is the dental professional that places dental implants. After surgical placement, the implant is covered with a temporary abutment, or healing cap, and left to heal for up to six months. During this time, the implant will integrate with your jaw bone to form a strong fusion, called osseointegration, that will support your dental prosthesis. Once it is fully healed and integrated, your Dentist will restore the implant with a permanent abutment and implant crown or other dental prosthesis.

A titanium implant has a lifespan of at least 20 years but with proper care and maintenance, can easily last a lifetime. The crown or other restoration may become damaged or fractured overtime, but that is easily fixed with a new crown or denture. The restoration is also susceptible to general wear and tear and may need to be replaced.

Ceramic implants have been used in the US since about 2009. Ceramic implants are more difficult to place because they are one piece and require a higher level of skill from your implant doctor. Ceramic implants can be a great alternative for patients who suffer from metal allergies though it is not as strong as titanium and can be at greater risk of cracks and fractures.

Fortunately, ceramic implants are easier to repair than titanium. One major benefit of ceramic implants is that they continue to look more natural as they age since there are no metal parts that risk showing at the gumline. Since ceramic implants have not been around as long, there are currently no long-term studies to define their lifespan.

What is the cost of an implant?

Ceramic implants are more expensive than titanium implants because manufacturing costs are higher and they are more difficult to place. While it is important to discuss all of your options and review any concerns with your Dentist, choosing between a titanium implant and a ceramic implant really boils down to personal preference. Patients with metal allergies will have a better chance of success with ceramic over titanium dental implants.

Dental Implant Problems

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