Improving Your Dental Care

Should You Choose A Zirconia Implant Device?

Throughout the last several decades, titanium has been the standard material when it comes to dental implantation. However, there have been some new advancements in implant technology, and zirconia has come on the market as a possible alternative to titanium. So, what is zirconia, and when should you think about asking your dentist about the material instead of titanium?

What Is Zirconia?

When you hear the term zirconia, you may think about diamonds and the way that cubic zirconia is used as a diamond alternative. Well, the zirconia used for implantation is similar in structure to the shiny stone you see in rings and necklaces. However, unlike the somewhat delicate stone version, zirconia is a stabilized oxide form of the material. And, the stabilization process transforms the substance into a ceramic material. When the processing is complete, the zirconia looks more like the ceramic used to make a dental crown.

Zirconia is a metal-free compound that has a lot of the same qualities as titanium. This means it is ideal for dental implementation in a variety of ways. The material is strong and porous. Strength means it is tough enough to withstand pressure from chewing and biting, while porosity allows for attachment to bone during the healing process.

One advantage of zirconia over titanium is the fact that the material is white in color. This means the implant device will appear natural even if the gums recede a small amount and reveal the device.

When Should You Think About Zirconia?

You should ask your dental professional about zirconia if you are concerned about aesthetics and want the most natural-looking device. Choosing exactly what you want is important because implants are permanent devices that cannot be easily replaced later on if you change your mind. 

Also, zirconia is a good idea if you have had an implant rejection somewhere else in the body. Sometimes the rejection is the result of a titanium allergy. While your doctor can test you for this, it may simply be wise to err on the side of caution and go with the zirconia implant from the start. And, since you can develop an allergy at any time, you can avoid future allergy problems by picking the hypoallergenic zirconia.

Zirconia is more expensive than titanium, so make sure to speak with your dental professional about costs before you choose this option. Also, if you are using your dental insurance for the procedure, you want to check with the company to see what types of implants they cover. 

Contact a dentist to learn more about your options for dental implants.