Dental Implants – Why They Work

Recently, due to dramatic improvements in success rates and the level of restorative tooth function they can provide, dental implants have increased in popularity. Dental implants have a long history, like most revolutionizing medical and dental advances, over which time their viability has continued to increase. As shown in clinical studies, their reliability has really skyrocketed in just the last few decades. This paper outlines why implants are so much more effective today and what variables contribute to success. For an overview of the process and illustrative images of implant components, see how dental implants are positioned.Learn more by visiting Clive Des Moines Cosmetic Dentist Association

Dental Implants Early Evidence – Low success

Some of the first known evidence of dental implants was revealed in the 1930’s by an excavation of the remains of a young Mayan woman, thought to date back to about 600 AD. Actually, after the death of the young woman, these implants were initially believed to have been placed for adornment – a practice that was quite common in ancient Egypt. It was in 1970 that a Brazilian professor used radiography to provide proof that the dental implants of the Mayan woman (made of seashells) were placed before her death. The x-rays revealed that around two of the three implants had regenerated bone. A very low success rate at that time is suggested by the scarcity of similar artifacts, although the Mayan culture was certainly noted for its advances and achievements. Little was likely known about why those dental implants worked (and why most others did not).

Continued experimentation – Successes not well understood

In the 19th century, heavy experimentation with dental implants took place. The materials typically used were gold and platinum, and implants were frequently placed immediately after an extraction. By that time, the attempts to implant human teeth in the 18th century had already provided proof that the human body would reject the teeth of someone else. Even the implants of the 19th century that were initially successful did not appear to last.