logo image

Dental implant structure

author icon By Dr. George Ghidrai

A dental implant is a surgical component that interfaces with the bone of the jaw or skull to support a dental prosthesis such as a crown, bridge or removable denture. After the implant is placed, a variable amount of healing time is required.

Normally, after this period, a special device (the abutment) is attached to the implant. The abutment will hold the dental prosthesis.

dental implant general structure

Dental implant structure

Dental implants come in a variety of shapes and sizes, so there is one to suit every clinical situation. An implant is actually an "artificial tooth root" ; the implant surface is ribbed for better integration into bone tissue.

dental implants dental implants dental implants

dental implants

Implants are also threaded ; when they are screwed into the bone, they collect bone tissue so that the implant is as stable as possible when it integrates into the bone.

Some implants are moulded as one piece with the crown ; in this case, the type of the crown is pre-determined. More often, an abutment is attached to the implant after the healing period ; this allows for more fine-tuning.

Manufacturing material

Most often, dental implants are made of titanium. Titanium is the most favored material by most of the dental clinicians and implant manufacturing companies due to its high biocompatibility, non-allergic and tissue friendly nature and its great ability to make a connection of its surface with the alveolar bone for the process of osseointegration.

Besides titanium, zirconium dental implants have lately emerged. Even though they are relatively new, there has been a considerable increase in the use of these dental implants.

dental implant materials


The implantation procedure requires specific tools. Generally, the manufacturing companies supply the implants along with a specific tool kit.

Dental implant tool kit

The dental implant tool kit contains all the necessary instruments for the surgical procedure and the prosthetic phase. The tool kit is supplied together with dental implants and abutments of various shapes and sizes.

dental implant tool kit

Here is what a kit normally consists of :

  • titanium surgical drills of various sizes, color coded

    titanium surgical drills
  • implant insertion tools

  • insertion tools for artificial abutments and healing abutments

  • healing abutments and cover screws ; these devices are attached to the implants immediately after the surgical placement

  • different screw keys

  • physiodispenser : a device used for bone cooling during surgery ; the bone must always be protected from high temperatures to prevent irreversible damage

    physiodispenser for dental implants
  • other supporting elements depending on the manufacturer: guide pins, special trays, stents etc.

Last review and update: May 2018


Dental implants, the complete patient's guide

Today, dental implants are the state-of-the-art tooth replacement systems and are now more common than ever before. This comprehensive guide deals with all the important aspects of implant dentistry ...more

Are Gum Diseases and Cancer Linked?

Over years, numerous studies have shown that the bacteria responsible for causing gum diseases might also be able to cause certain types of cancer. Read to learn more ...more

How to sustainin fresh breath with braces

When you wear braces, it is not enough to brush your teeth religiously as you may still suffer from bad breath. These 7 tips will help you while wearing braces and will continue benefiting you after your braces come off ...more