Dental Implants Are NOT as good as real teeth
Hey everyone, how you doing? I’m a cosmetic and dental implants dentist based in and around London in the UK, and today we’re going to talk about five reasons why Dental Implants are not as good as your own teeth.
Okay, so it might be strange that, because I do implants, I’m making a video on this, the truth is every once in a while, once or twice a month, someone will come and see me and they will say something along the lines of – “hey look. Can I just have all of my teeth out and have implants?” Okay, and I think the thinking behind this kind of statement is that my teeth are giving me loads of problems and they have done for loads at a time. They don’t look very good and I’ve seen on the internet that this treatment, which just happens to be the most expensive treatment that you can have at a dentist, is going to solve all of my problems.
Now dental implant treatment is fantastic. We get amazing results with it and it is a truly life-changing treatment, but it’s not as good as having your own teeth. I always try and preserve the the patient’s own teeth, if possible, and here’s why?
Okay, the number one reason is that natural teeth have something called a periodontal ligament, whereas implants don’t. So let me explain what a periodontal ligament is. Your teeth are not connected to your jaw bones. Okay, so your teeth, have this tiny little ligament, which goes around them. Okay, just like your your bones aren’t connected to one eat and each other directly, there’s something in between, there’s this ligament in between the bone and your teeth, and what this does, It has loads of like blood vessels and things like that, but also it acts like a little shock absorber.
So when you’re biting and chewing your food, the shock will be absorbed before it’s transferred into the jawbone. This is a good thing, because it means that you can use your teeth, not only more effectively, but also you know how hard you’re biting. Therefore this is one thing that implants don’t have don’t have is an ability to absorb shock, which means that if the bite is out on your dental implant tooth, all of that force is going to be transmitted straight into the bone, which can sometimes lead to Bone loss around the implant, and early loss of the implant. You also you don’t know how hard you’re biting together.
This is more important for those people who have had full implants top and bottom you’ve got no sensation on how hard you’re biting. So you can actually put a lot of biting force way more than people can, with natural teeth on your your full set of all on fours or whatever it is. This can sometimes lead to fractures and things like that, but there’s things we can do to minimize this, but it can be a problem, something which people haven’t thought about originally.
Dental implants have uniform shapes
The second reason why dental implants aren’t as good as your natural teeth is that dental implants have uniform shapes. Okay, now, there’s a million different variations on the implant, but essentially they’re cylinders. Okay, so like a coke can is a cylinder. A dental implant is a miniature cylinder. We can get different widths, so we can get different heights, but if you look at a tooth which has just been removed, the root of the tooth is not a cylinder shape.
Dental Implants are cone shaped
Okay, quite often it’s a cone shape, or maybe it’s got two or three cone shapes shaped roots attached to it. Dental implants are one cylinder and the reason this is sometimes important is more in the aesthetic zone at the front of the mouth. At the back of the mouth, it doesn’t really matter so much. Okay, so around an implant, it’s slightly different, because the whole thing is a cylinder shape, the top of it is a disc.
So this means we could actually put a tiny little probe up past the side of this tooth. It wouldn’t hurt at all and all the way to this attachment point. Okay, so it means you got to keep all of this much longer pocket, essentially, you need to keep all of that clean in order to keep the any gum disease to bay or anything like that. You know to prevent any gum disease, whereas on a natural tooth, the attachment is much nearer the gum margin. So it’s a lot easier to clean.
Now there have been advances. There are companies who can make dental implants custom-made to replicate the shape of your roots. I’ve personally had zero experience in this. I had none of my patients that I’ve seen have ever had this kind of implant done of only seen in magazines. I don’t even know any dentist who is placing these. There must be, but I just don’t know any of them, so this could be the next development in dental implants, but for now the vast majority of implants are essentially a cylinder shape.
Now, while we’re talking about attachment zones and things like that, let’s talk about gum disease. Dental implants get gum disease in the same way that natural teeth get gum disease, okay, so and for those people who don’t know how gum disease starts. Essentially, you have bacteria which sits very near this attachment zone on a tooth or an implant. The bacteria starts to release toxins. This creates inflammation from the body which is trying to fight these toxins, and the inflammation essentially erodes the bone away because the bone thinks hey, I want to get away from this whole infected area, so you lose bone from around the tooth.
This causes gum recession. This causes teeth to become loose and it’s exactly the same thing around implants, so you can get bone loss. We call it something different. We call it peri-implantitis rather than periodontitis, but it’s exactly the same process.
Now remember: dental implants don’t have any code on the ligament, so first of all, they’ve got a little bit less blood supply to fight off this infection. But the implant surface is typically very rough, and this is done deliberately because a rough surface has a much greater surface area and when we’re putting the implants in, we want a big surface area around this implant so that you can get more bone interlocking into the implant, giving you a much more secure implant.
But if you start getting gum gum disease around this implant, this rough surface makes it impossible to clean or very, very difficult to clean and cleaning is the first defense around implants or any gum disease. So because we’ve got this rough surface around the implant, if you get gum disease around an implant, it becomes extremely difficult to treat and nobody’s agreed on the best way of treating gum disease in implants. But what we do know is that it’s more aggressive than on natural teeth and it’s much more difficult to treat.
Dental implant is Man-Made
Okay, reason number four, why dental implants are not as good as your own teeth? Is that a dental implant is Man-Made.
So there’s plenty of people who, on the internet, who are absolutely hate, anything man-made hate, anything dental. Now, in the medical industry we wouldn’t use stuff which is harmful to patients. Okay, it just doesn’t make sense even from a business point of view. If I had a product which was actually doing more harm than good for my patients, we would soon find out, and any business that was actually creating harm would go out of business.
Remember the vast majority of dental implants are life-changing in a positive fashion, but because they are an artificial material, whether it being titanium or ceramic. That material is not your body. If you imagine, every single cell in your body has a unique barcode which is unique to you and if you get infection from bacteria or a virus or anything like that, because those things have different barcodes, your body can detect them and it knows to fight Them off and our dental implants, don’t have cells and or anything like they pretty much in most cases go undetected, but for some people they can cause an allergic reaction, in the same way that some people are allergic to nickel jewelry and they get redness on you know around where the jewelry is.
This kind of mild inflammation can possibly happen around implants. Now we know that titanium allergies are extremely rare, but some people may be mildly sensitive to two titanium, and that means they could get bone loss and problems around their implants. And nobody really knows why. I know I’ve got one or two patients where we’ve got issues around implants, mild low-grade issues, and I really cannot figure out why that is okay, possibly it’s the a mild sensitivity. Remember, a mild sensitivity is the same thing as an allergic reaction. Just a lot milder. So it’s not an all-or-nothing thing.
Alright, there’s different grades of sensitivity that we can get. So until we can grow your own teeth from your stem cells. We’re going to have to put something artificial there.
Dental Implant companies
Okay and reason number five, is that dental implants are made by dental implant companies right, so dental implant companies are businesses just like any other business and they will develop new implants and they can discontinue old implants.
Okay, so this is this has happened and because only really the dental implant company can make the components which fit onto the implant. If that company decides to discontinue an implant, then it can be very difficult to replace a crown which someone has on their implants. So this is the number one reason that to use such a big worldwide organization to supply the implants for my patients. Not only do they have all the resources to develop the best implants, but also, I know that if I do implant work for one of my patients and they move to a different country, there’s never going to be a problem with getting the right components to fix a crown which may have chipped while you know, while they can’t come to me.
So I’ve had also problems where someone else has placed some weird implants that I’ve never heard of. In fact, you can check out my video on the Orlan for disaster, where the implant system was really not very good, but we found a workaround to to work with it. Okay, so it created a lot of hassle.
I’ve got patients who have had implants placed in India and now we’re getting problems with the crowns and bridges on top. The simple thing would be just to replace the crowns and bridges, but because I can’t get the components because that company in India won’t supply to me in the UK, it makes me it makes it impossible to actually restore those implants.
Okay, so this is a kind of an easy one to fix. Just you have a good reputable global company and the cool thing about Stram and the company which I could buy most of my implants from is that even if they’ve discontinued an implant line, they still produce the components of those implants.
You can watch the Video HERE