Despite more recent technological advancements in construction and materials, the history of dental implants goes back thousands of years. Historical evidence suggests that people have attempted to replace missing teeth with root form implants in most major ancient societies.
In ancient China, early dentists tapped bamboo pegs into the jawbone to replace missing teeth. Two thousand year old remains from Egypt also show tooth-shaped pegs. However, Egyptian teeth were beautifully carved in precious metals, ivory and other materials. Some remains even show teeth transplanted from humans.
One of the most well known archeological finds was discovered at a site in Honduras from 600 AD. Scientists dug up the remains of a young Mayans woman with three missing incisors replaced by pieces of shell. The shell was carefully and intricately shaped to resemble her other teeth. Bone growth around the implants and calculus, indicated that they were both functional and esthetic. Despite the lack of modern dentistry at the time, this find is currently displayed as one of the earliest and most successful attempts at dental implant treatment.
Dental implants in the format we know today was developed in the 20th century. During this time in history, doctors and dentists began carefully crafting prosthetic teeth, experimenting with high-quality materials and developing highly skilled surgical procedures.
However, the beginning of implants as we know them now started in the 1950s. During this period, researchers were carefully studying titanium chambers planted in rabbit ears. These same researchers observed that bone tended to grow in close proximity to titanium. This process showed them that human tissues could effectively adhere to metal under proper circumstances. The process was officially dubbed osseointegration, for the scientific way titanium fuses with bone. This also accounts for the strength and durability of dental implant foundations.
Unlike our ancestors, modern day dental implants are much less risky and much more sophisticated. The procedure involves the carefully insertion of a fixture (the foundation), an abutment (middle connecting piece) and a crown (prosthetic tooth).
During an initial examination, teeth, mouth and jawbone are carefully measured and an incision is made. Then, a small titanium fixture is inserted directly into the jawbone and the wound is closed. The patient is then sent home for a period of healing.
After a few months of healing, an abutment is attached to the fixture and the doctor begins precisely crafting a prosthetic tooth called a crown. This stage is extremely important because Dr. Barksdale will use his considerable experience to match the shape, color and size of your natural teeth.
Finally, when the fixture and abutment are completely healed, the crown will be placed and you can then enjoy your beautiful new replacement tooth!
The amazing staff at Barksdale Family Dentistry can’t wait to help you fix your missing teeth with permanent and natural-looking dental implants. In just a few short visits to their state-of-the-art facilities, patients can reap the benefits of stunning dental implants. Still have questions about the dental implants process, the benefits or how you can finance your new smile? Our informative website can provide you with the answers you need, as well as any other relevant information you may need to decide if dental implants are the right tooth replacement option for you. Then, when you are ready, please call one of our friendly staff members at our Baton Rouge, LA office. We look forward to helping you schedule your dental implants consultation today. We can’t wait to help you get a healthy and confident smile now!