Dentist Explains How Our Ancestors Used Ancient Dental Implants

September 12, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — drcurtis @ 2:20 pm

parts of a modern dental implantIt’s already tough to face tooth loss today, in the modern age of technology. Can you imagine how it was back in the older days?

Losing a tooth might have meant living without the ability to chew or speak properly. Back then, they would suggest letting an ancient dentist implant a false tooth made of rock or wood into your mouth—despite how sketchy that sounds. In fact, archeologists have found old findings of a variety of proposed dental implants, ranging from pig bones to iron rods.

It’s no doubt that our ancestors knew it was important to have all of our teeth. Your dentist wants to take a look into the history of dental implants and how they’ve come to be the next best thing to natural teeth today.

Dental Implant History

Dating back to even 4000 years ago in China, bamboo shoots have been found in the mouths of our Asian ancestors. Scientists have found seashells embedded in ancient skulls of people who lived around the turn of the century in Honduras. In the late 1800’s, doctors, scientists, and researchers alike had already started experimenting with mounted porcelain teeth. They were attached to platinum discs and inserted into the mouth. Most of these experiments ended in failure.

So how did modern dentistry reach the 98% success rate for dental implants that we have today?

We Discovered Osseointegration on Accident

One of the biggest challenges for dentists experimenting with early dental implants was the failure of fusing the implant with the body naturally, or the process of osseointegration.   Fortunately, a solution for this problem was discovered on accident by an osteopaedic surgeon named Per-Ingvar Bränemark back in 1952.

Bränemark was studying healing and regeneration in rabbits, and he inserted a titanium post through a rabbit’s leg and studied those results. To his surprise, the post couldn’t be removed a few weeks later when he tried to take it out. He realized that the bone had naturally fused with the titanium.

This study was then applied to dental technology.  In fact, Bränemark placed the first dental implant in 1965 in a live human volunteer!

Now We Have Evolved Dental Implants

Although Per-Ingvar Bränemark is considered the founder of modern dental implants, many technological advancements have made implants the best way to replace teeth today.

New implants still use titanium implant posts to naturally bond better with existing bone tissue. Implants are also much more realistic looking than traditional varieties. You can attach many different dental prosthetics to them like crowns, bridges, and dentures.  These days, implants blend seamlessly among your natural teeth.

Getting dental implants is a tried and true way to replace missing teeth. If you would like to learn more about how to face tooth loss in a modern way, reach out to your dentist.

Meet Your Dental Team

Dr. Curtis and our other dental team have taken countless continuing education courses that have made our office a leader in local advanced dental techniques. Our conscientious attention to detail and thorough techniques make our practice a place you can trust for the most long-lasting, comfortable, beautiful care available. If you would like to discuss dental implants with our dentist, reach out to Dr. Curtis by calling Curtis Family Dentistry.

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