Comparative Analysis: Zirconia vs. Titanium Dental Implants
Zirconia dental implants Los Angeles

Comparative Analysis: Zirconia vs. Titanium Dental Implants

Dental implants have come a long way over the years. Implants have been used since the 1960s and act as a replacement for missing or damaged teeth. Implants screw right into your jawbone and become a sort of artificial root, which anchors the false tooth in place. Dental implants are available in two materials. Implants are a much better repair method than dentures or bridges because the tooth can’t move or fall out. Implants also look more natural than dentures. You can choose between zirconia, a ceramic based implant, and metal titanium implants.

Before we can insert the implants, you should consider both implant materials carefully because each have unique advantages and disadvantages. Our dentist, Dr. Bruce Vafa, will help you choose the best material for you based on your preferences. We’ll also discuss any health conditions you have to determine the safest type of implants for you.

Here at Smile Angels of Beverly Hills, we offer the latest technology in dental implants. We’re here with you every step of the way, from extractions to grafting to implantation. Let’s talk more about zirconia and titanium, their benefits, and how they can help you.

Implant Materials

Dental implants have a colorful history. In ancient times, people replaced lost teeth with wood, bamboo, iron, or even teeth from other humans or animals. During the 19th century, dentists experimented with metals or porcelains to create false teeth. In the late 20th century, titanium implants revolutionized dentistry, making it possible to have both a healthier and better-looking smile.

Titanium has long been the first choice for implant material, but some patients don’t do well with titanium. Some patients also began to prefer more natural options than metal. Researchers searched for alternatives and developed zirconia, a ceramic substance made from altered zirconium. Zirconia has gained traction over the years as a nicer looking and more natural option for false teeth.

Considerations for Implants

Titanium implants are considered more durable than zirconia implants. They also come in one and two-piece varieties, while zirconia only come in one piece. The fail rate for titanium implants is lower because titanium is slightly more biocompatible than zirconia. Over time, tissues and bones grow around and tolerate titanium a little better than zirconia. This means that titanium also has less of a chance of corroding over time.

Though titanium can sometimes cause reactions for patients with metal allergies or autoimmune disorders, this is very rare. However, enough patients have expressed concerns about metal implants that zirconia implants are now more in demand. Zirconia implants work well with gums and tissues, and are able to resist bacteria more easily. They’re also built to hold up against typical wear and tear without corroding or cracking.

Overall, both titanium and zirconia implants have high success rates for patients. Your choice between the two materials will mainly depend on the condition of your teeth, the cost, and what you prefer.

Cosmetic Considerations

Zirconia implants match more closely in color to normal teeth, making them a more aesthetic option than titanium implants. Metal from titanium screws in the gums can sometimes show through. This is especially a concern for implants of front teeth, where the gum line is more noticeable when you smile. Visible titanium is typically only a concern for patients with thinner gums.

The false tooth on top of the screws are created to look as close as possible to natural teeth. No matter which material you choose, the false teeth will look like a normal part of your smile. Compared to dentures and bridges which can come loose, it’s hard to tell implants from regular teeth.

At Smile Angels, we’ve had the privilege of helping many patients achieve a beautiful smile through dental implants. From replacing one tooth to doing a full mouth restoration, we’ve helped several patients achieve better quality of life.

How Long Do Implants Last?

As long as you care for your implants consistently, they can last anywhere from twenty years to a lifetime. Studies show that titanium implants last longer than zirconia implants, but only by a slim margin. Zirconia implants hold up well over time, but we need more research to see just how long they last.

Implants need regular care from both you and your dentist if they’re going to last. Implants are a foreign body and are susceptible to infection. Infection in turn can cause implant failure because implants will have to be removed to treat the infection. It’s important to tell your regular dentist and your hygienist if you’ve had implants. This way, your dental professionals will know that they should use gentler tools when cleaning your teeth.

You’ll need to brush your teeth twice daily with a soft toothbrush and use special floss made specifically for implants. We’ll also give you a less harsh implant toothpaste after your surgery, which you should use instead of regular toothpaste. Interdental brushes can help you clean even more deeply between your implanted teeth. For still harder to reach places, try an oral irrigator, which flushes water between the teeth.

Implant Satisfaction

Many patients report high satisfaction rates with dental implants, whether titanium or zirconia. Dental implants make it easier to eat, but they can also restore self-confidence and improve speech and facial appearance. Both titanium and zirconia implants fuse well with the jawbone so that your implants can feel like natural teeth. Though adverse reactions to implants can happen, they’re very rare and unlikely for most patients. Titanium and zirconia implants can both last long with proper care and improve quality of life for at least 95% of patients.

Zirconia implants can give you peace of mind if you prefer a more natural material. Zirconia is also a good option if you struggle with oral hygiene because of its resistance to bacteria. Alternatively, if you grind your teeth or chew vigorously, titanium might be a better option. Zirconia is strong, but titanium will always be more durable.

At Smile Angels, we make it our goal to help you achieve lifelong comfort and satisfaction with your implants. We want to help you create a smile that is comfortable, visually appealing, and healthy.

Thinking About Implants?

Most patients are great candidates for dental implants. Even if your jawbone density isn’t great, we offer bone grafts to get your jaw ready for implants. At Smile Angels, we use only the latest dental technology for your implantation surgery, and offer either titanium and zirconia options. Though each material has pros and cons, zirconia and titanium implants can both help you achieve a better, healthier smile.

Though some patients worry about titanium allergies or immune responses, it is still a safe and durable option for implants. Titanium does not corrode, it bonds well to the jawbone, and can last the rest of your life.

Zirconia is still a relatively new option for implants, but it has proven itself as a fantastic alternative to titanium. Zirconia implants resist infection and have a more natural look than titanium. This material stands up well under pressure, and works well as a holistic alternative to metal.

Are you ready to talk about trying dental implants? We would love to see you at our Beverly Hills office for a consultation with Dr. Bruce Vafa. Please contact us today by phone or website to get your personalized plan started!

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