The History of Dental Implants

A woman smiling after receiving a dental implant at Keith A. Boenning, DDS in Towson, MDDental implants are an incredibly popular, highly effective treatment used to replace missing teeth. Treatment involves the use of small titanium posts, which are surgically placed in your jaw, to provide support for your replacement teeth. Keith A. Boenning, DDS provides dental implants to meet a variety of different tooth replacement needs. While commonly thought to be a modern development, dental implants have a much longer history.

The First Dental Implants

Dental implants are often thought to be a modern development. While this is true of implants that we know and use today, dental implants have been around for thousands of years. They have also been found in all different parts of the world, including Egypt and Rome. However, the earliest dental implants were often found to be placed after death. They were often placed as a way to prepare the body for the afterlife.

One of the most interesting discoveries was one made in 1931. The mandible of a young Mayan woman was found with bits of seashell and bone in her jaw where a tooth should have been. Originally, it was thought that the implant had been placed after death. However, later it was found that her bone had begun to fuse to the implant, indicating that it had been placed while she was still alive.

The Beginning of Modern Implants

Modern implants are the result of modern discovery. In the 1950s, a Swedish orthopedic surgeon by the name of Per-Ingvar Brånemark was researching bone healing and regeneration. At one point, he placed a titanium rod in the femur of a rabbit. He later went to remove the rod only to find the bone had fused to it and he could not remove it. Brånemark had discovered osseointegration.

This discovery led to further research that eventually led to the development of dental implants. The first implants were placed successfully in 1965. Even though they were successful, Brånemark continued with research and development, striving to make implants stronger, more reliable, and more successful. He eventually entered into a partnership with Bofors AB, a company that helped him to develop and market his dental implant products. Today, Bofors AB is known as Nobel Industries. Bofors AB eventually founded Nobelpharma, today Nobel Biocare, a company that focuses solely on dental implants. Nobel Biocare is the industry leader in dental implants and implant products.

What is In Store for Dental Implants in the Future?

Dental implants have undergone numerous developments since their initial development. Made from a titanium alloy, which has greatly improved their strength, there are many different types of implants, making treatment more widely available to more people. There are implants to replace a single tooth as well as several teeth. There are also several options available for full arch replacement, including options that can help to avoid the need for a bone graft before implant placement.

Research and development continue to this day. There is currently research being conducted into alternative materials. One material that has been discovered is zirconia. This implant provides a metal-free option for those with allergies or those who want to avoid metals. Dental implants have completely revolutionized the way in which we can replace your teeth.

For more information on dental implants, and to find out if they are the right solution for you, call Keith A. Boenning, DDS at (410) 828-1717 today to schedule your consultation.
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