Dental implants have come a long way. Centuries ago, people used the teeth of relatives who had passed away, or carved replacements from ivory and wood. While this likely provided a bit function, the devices weren't at all comfortable and would often cause infection or discomfort. Today, endodontists have advanced technologies and materials to work with, ensuring better results.
Over the past decade, one of the most promising materials, bioceramics, has shown a remarkable benefit in a number of treatment strategies. In this article, you'll learn the truth about why bioceramics are becoming "the new black" in dentistry.
Most Bioceramics are Classed as Bioinert
One of the most important features found within certain bioceramics lies not in what they can do, but what they don't do. Zirconia-based and alumina-based ceramics are completely bioinert, meaning that they don't interact with tissue when inserted into the body.
So why is this beneficial in dental implants? The answer to that has to do with the fact that other metals and ceramics can sometimes cause inflammation, gum recession, and even allergic reactions. If you happen to have metal sensitivities or issues with regular ceramics, bioceramics can allow your endodontist to offer you dental implants while reducing the chances of a bad reaction. Your own tissues won't grow over them, nor will your body attempt to reject them, something that can be very useful for both fillings and implants.
All Bioceramics are Completely Non-toxic
Throughout history, humans have responded to the need for false teeth in a variety of ways. Amalgam fillings, comprised of a variety of metals and a mixture of liquid mercury, have caused controversy for some time. This is largely because mercury can have detrimental effects on the body over time, through a process called bioaccumulation. This term, when simplified, refers to the fact that mercury's toxicity tends to worsen over time.
While research into whether amalgam fillings are really problematic is ongoing, better materials are allowing dentists to forgo it entirely. Most are able to make use of non-toxic bioceramics instead, providing the same durability and longevity without any potential risk to the patient. In fact, all bioceramics are classed a non-toxic to the body, regardless of what they are used for within the body.
Bioceramic Materials Don't Shrink After Placement
Another serious issue with non-bioceramic materials, when used in fillings, is that the material itself has a tendency to shrink slightly after placement. Unfortunately, this leaves the endodontist with two options, neither of which are really preferable. He or she can overfill the cavity slightly, which can be wasteful, or they can fill the cavity normally and hope that it doesn't become displaced after it sets.
Even minor displacement can result in small cracks, offering bacteria and food an easy hiding place, which can lead to additional decay later on. Serious displacement, especially if the material used shrinks a great deal, can sometimes result in fillings that fall out before their suggested life span. Too much moisture in the mouth, poor placement, and other variables can increase the risk of failure.
Bioceramics, however, don't suffer from these issues. Rather than shrinking after placement, the majority of preparations actually expand by a very small amount, filling the space and preventing movement and thus, failure. The result is implants or fillings that last longer and are more reliable over time. For you, the patient, that means fewer repairs and less money being spent on replacements down the road.
Whether your endodontist has advised you that you need implants, or you're just going in for a root canal, new materials are helping to ensure that your procedure has a better chance of success. While even bioceramics have a small chance of side effects, they are considered safer and more reliable than historically-used materials. For questions about whether a bioceramic material is right for your needs, contact an endodontist through resources like http://www.jpdentalgroup.com today.