You might think of tooth loss as something experienced mainly by kids and old folks, but a person can lose teeth at any age. Usually, it’s because of gum disease. But sometimes it’s root canal teeth with residual infection that need to be extracted, or healthy teeth that are lost due to facial trauma from impact accidents.
And just as there are multiple reasons for adult tooth loss, there are multiple options for replacing teeth. Bridges, partials, and dentures can be excellent choices, but dental implants are the option that are most like natural teeth.
You can think of a dental implant as an artificial tooth root. This screw-shaped object is surgically placed in the jaw, where it joins with the bone in a process called osseointegration. This gives the implant great stability. We then attach a crown to the top, creating an artificial tooth that looks and works just like a real one.
If more than one tooth needs to be replaced, implants can also be used to support bridges, partials, and even full dentures.
While titanium implants are still the norm in dentistry, in our office, we place only ceramic. Made from zirconia, these implants are very strong, resistant to cracking, and highly biocompatible. More, titanium has proven to have some major downsides.
For one, they’ve been shown to contribute to out-of-control, chronic inflammation in the jawbone and raise the risk of a condition called fatty-degenerative osteonecrosis in the medullary spaces of the jawbone. That’s a mouthful (no pun intended), so it’s called FDOJ for short. It’s popularly known as a cavitation.
These areas of dead and decaying tissue within the jaw are often covered by healthy looking tissue and may trigger no obvious symptoms early on. However, these “hidden infections” can be identified on a CBCT scan or through EAV or other form of meridian assessment.
German dentist and naturopath Dr. Johann Lechner and American implant expert Dr. Sammy Noumbissi have presented good evidence
for the immunological relationship between Ti [titanium] implants and FDOJ. A purely clinical assessment of Ti implants is insufficient. Radiographs also fail to indicate the derailed mediator process (cytokines and interleukins) triggered by Ti implants. Consequently, the evaluation and indication of Ti implants must also be viewed from a systemic perspective. In failing to recognize this, detrimental local and systemic health consequences may occur in the host that are concealed by the apparent success of a “stable implant.”
Indeed, implanted metals can trigger autoimmune dysfunction. While there are many variables at play here – genetics, health behaviors, environmental exposures, and so on –
the scientific literature is abundant with studies and cases of individuals improving or recovering from autoimmune disease usually within a year or two after removal of the offending metal….
Some of health conditions that improved (or from which patients even recovered) after removal of metal medical and dental implants and devices include a variant of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) known as progressive muscular atrophy, autoimmune thyroiditis, chronic fatigue syndrome, Crohn’s disease, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, oral lichen planus, Sjögren’s syndrome, and systemic lupus erythematosus.
One thing to note, by the way, is that titanium implants aren’t always 100% titanium. They’re usually alloys: mostly titanium but mixed with other metals, including some, such as nickel and aluminum, that are toxic or can trigger allergic reactions in people with sensitivities. And despite titanium being considered “bio-inert,” some people may even be allergic to the titanium itself.
In one case, a fifty-four-year-old man with a titanium dental implant and four titanium screws in his vertebra became so sick he could not work. Chronic fatigue syndrome, cognitive impairment, Parkinson’s-like trembling, and severe depression plagued him. Six months after removing the implants and screws, he was well enough to return to work.
A fourteen-year-old girl developed inflammatory lesions on her face six months after receiving titanium orthodontic brackets. Her reactivity to titanium skyrocketed, and she became mentally and physically exhausted. Within nine months after replacing the brackets with metal-free material, her facial lesions almost completely disappeared, and she was healthy and active.
Metal implants have also been shown to corrode. The release of metal particles can cause inflammation around the implant, leading to a condition called peri-implantitis. As with gum disease, the inflammation destroys both the gum tissue and the bone it covers. If the infection goes far enough, the implant may fail.
Just how common is this? One study in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology found that after at least 20 years, more than 22% of implant patients had developed peri-implantitis. More than half developed its precursor, peri-implant mucositis.
Then there are the problems that can arise when titanium is placed in a mouth where there is already some metal dental work – mercury fillings, for instance, or crowns made of porcelain fused to metal. Interactions between these different metals can actually generate electrical currents in the mouth. (Here’s a fun and easy-to-understand demonstration of how it happens.) This oral galvanism can interfere with health in a multitude of ways.
So you can see why we stick with ceramic implants for our patients. The CeraRoot implants we favor have additional virtues, as well.
Most implants are made of two pieces. The microgap between them is a perfect harbor for harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites that live in the mouth. Microbial infection is another common cause of peri-implantitis and implant failure.
CeraRoot implants are one-piece implants. They sit flush with the gums, making the the cleanest implant option. You don’t need special techniques to clean them at home. A regular toothbrush will do. And because they’re white, there’s never any danger of dark lines showing up at the margins. They blend more naturally with your natural dentition.
Simply, we find CeraRoot implants to be the one implant option that’s the closest thing you’ll find to a natural tooth!