A Long Dental History
Were you aware that there is history of dental implants dating back to 4000 years ago in China? That’s a heck of a long time ago, can you imagine what they even did for implants then? According to remains uncovered those early dental implants were carved from bamboo pegs and then tapped into the bone. The same was done in ancient Egypt, only this time with rare metals and ivory. There have even been mummies unearthed which contained transplanted human teeth.
Throughout the centuries we humans have used a whole range of materials to replace our lost and damaged teeth. Unfortunately for our ancestors they didn’t have some of the best dental implant manufacturers like we do today. Some other materials used in the distant past were wood, shells and carved stones. Some of these materials used for replacing teeth were not just for function, but also for show. Just imagine someone smiling at you with a mouth full of teeth made out of various precious metals and gems. These early implants had rather brutal implementation procedures. The patient would have the implant hammered into the socket of the previous tooth while they were conscious. The hope being that the material would fuse with the jawbone over time, and some actually did.
These techniques for dental implants continued on throughout the centuries until in 1952 an orthopedic surgeon discovered he could not remove a titanium cylinder he had placed in the bone of a rabbit’s ear to study how it healed. He then realized that titanium had a unique property that caused bone to fuse with it. The technical name for this is osseointegration. This not only led to the modern development of dental implants which can now be perfectly crafted for any missing tooth, but also for artificial implants in other parts of the body.
Today a typical dental implant is a titanium screw (resembling the shape of a tooth root) that has been roughened with acid etching or sandblasting in order to increase the surface area. The greater the surface area is, the easier for the bone to attach to it. The most important thing to be concerned about today is that your dentist orders high quality and well-crafted titanium implants.