Dental implant structure
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
Here is what a kit normally consists of :
titanium surgical drills of various sizes, color coded
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
other supporting elements depending on the manufacturer: guide pins, special trays, stents etc.
Last review and update: February 2019