Dental Implant History
Dental implants have come a long way over the past thousands of years. While it seems too crazy to be true, it is! Implants in different variations have been around since ancient times. Here at Oasis Dental, though, Dr. Aldridge uses the latest cutting-edge technology to make your process as safe and simple as humanly possible. To understand where we are going, we need also to understand where we are coming from. This is a brief view of how implants have developed over time.
What Are Dental Implants?
There are a wide variety of replacement options if you are missing teeth or need one or more extracted. One of the most popular options is a dental implant, which is a titanium post that we surgically install into your upper or lower jaw. This fuses with your jaw to create a permanent root to which we can secure one or more false teeth. It is a great option for restoring your smile cosmetically and functionally. This, however, is not how implants started. They used to be a lot more primitive.
Where Do Implants Come From?
The very first known use of dental implants comes from ancient China, about 4,000 years ago. When teeth were lost, they would use small bamboo rods to fill in the gap. These were neither functional as teeth nor cosmetically appealing. However, they used what they had. A short time later and not too long apart on the historical timeline, are tombs we have found in both Egypt and France. In Egypt, an iron peg was hammered into the jaw of a king, while in France, a copper peg was found in the jaw of a man in a Celtic grave. It is assumed that these kinds of primitive restorations were administered after the death of the patient, as it would have been incredibly painful to have happened while alive. There has also been evidence found of the use of animal teeth in place of patients’ teeth in a type of waste-nothing ideology.
It was not until the 18th century that dentists even began experimenting with metal alloys or gold to recreate missing teeth. None of these early tries were successful, as they did not bond with the bone whatsoever. The bonding properties associated with titanium were not discovered until 1952 when an orthopedic surgeon found it fused with the femur of a rabbit. In 1965, the first titanium implant was given to a human volunteer, and we have been making vast improvements since. The titanium screw today is fixed to the jaw and given four to six months to heal. When it is finished healing, it has fused completely with the bone and can last a patient a lifetime.
Dr. Aldridge here at Oasis Dental can help you fill in the space where your tooth used to be quickly and efficiently, thanks to the hard work of those who came before us. For more information on our process, techniques, equipment, or anything else related to Dental Implants, give us a call and set up an appointment today.