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History of Dental Implants
Dentist speaking with beautiful Black patient about the history of dental implants  Dr. Behnaz Yalda, DMD Dentistry is a growing science, as is all medicine. The science includes better practices, the development of better tools and technology, in addition to providing our patients with more education on how to care for their teeth. Some steps are incorporated rapidly, and some have included a long period of research and collection of information. Incorporating the use of dental implants may seem like a fresh new idea, but it has actually been a highly studied restorative treatment that in some aspects dates back thousands of years. The surgical and treatment process today is backed by decades of research and a proven track record. In fact, it is considered the most successful dental restoration in long term studies.

A dental implant is a device that is placed into the jawbone to serve as a new post to support a permanent tooth prosthetic. This treatment is made possible by combining your own natural ability to heal along with biocompatible devices to work with your body.

Observing Primitive Dental Implant Attempts

The early beginnings of dental implants began before written history. We know that humans have looked for ways to restore missing teeth for thousands of years. Scientists have discovered skeletal remains in multiple places around the world, from multiple time periods, with examples of primitive tooth replacement. They have observed skeletons with stone, shell, bamboo and metal all that have been wedged into the jaw structure to be used as teeth. It wasn’t the desire that interested scientists, rather it was seeing the results.

Our bone is continuously healing and growing when the stress of use is applied. Meaning, if we use our bones, they heal, the opposite is also true, if we don’t use the bone, it will atrophy and pull back those resources. When we lose a tooth, that portion of the bone is no longer being used, so the bone in that space becomes smaller through atrophy. We often associate a smaller, collapsed facial structure to be a sign of age, but it is actually a sign of tooth loss. When a device is placed in the bone, such as a dental implant, the bone heals and grows around it. This process is known as osseointegration, meaning the bone integrates or fuses with a secondary device. Scientists were fascinated to see that the bone had grown up and around these primitive implants. Research for how to use this information began in the early twentieth century. Doctors wanted to find a way to place a material that was biocompatible, strong, and able to stay with the patient long term. It was in the 1960’s that the first dental implants began to be used.

Titanium was found to be the material of choice, though we have now added a non-metallic ceramic option as well. Additionally, scientists have elevated this healing by designing the implant device with a threaded end like a screw to create a lot of surface area for the bone to make contact with. Following a period of healing, the implant is now a permanent and firm post in your mouth. We can then use this post to attach a dental prosthetic such as a dental crown, bridge, or denture. The number of implants needed, and the device needed, will be discussed during your consultation.

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Frederick, MD

(240) 831-6001


77 Thomas Johnson Dr. Suite D
Frederick, MD 21702

Gaithersburg, MD

803 Russell Avenue, Suite 3A
Gaithersburg, MD 20879

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