LOS ALTOS, Calif., May 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Bay Area dental patients with missing or badly damaged teeth are increasingly turning to next-generation, metal-free dental implants, reports the Peninsula Center of Cosmetic Dentistry. The Los Altos-based, leading cosmetic dentistry center announces today the availability of metal-free, third-generation "zirconia" teeth implants, satisfying pent-up demand from patients with metal allergies, or those simply living the Bay Area's health-conscious lifestyle.
"In the Bay Area people are very forward-thinking and very health-conscious, so we see a lot more demand for zirconia implants than anywhere else in the state," said PCCD implant dentist Dr. Joseph Field.
Zirconia implant installation is just as straight forward as a metal implant, yet zirconia offers a number of advantages for the same price as titanium at PCCD: zirconia implants accumulate less plaque than titanium; and since titanium implants can darken gums, white-colored zirconia looks nicer – especially in front teeth.
Zirconia also creates a much-needed option for the three percent of the population allergic to titanium – the metal most-often-used in dental implants. A titanium allergy can cause chronic inflammation around the implant, or a general malaise, according to Dr. Field. "It's just this whole feeling of being sick."
Health-conscious patients without allergies are also opting for zirconium because they don't want metal in their body, and small amounts of titanium can migrate from an implant. "We've been doing metal-free dentistry for 15 years. The last link was just the actual implant," he said.
Zirconia oxide is a type of ceramic first-used in hip replacements, Dr. Field said. Zirconia tooth implants debuted in Europe, and PCCD has waited until their success rates rivaled titanium. Third-gen zirconia implants received FDA approval in January, and Dr. Field has acquired the additional training to roll out the option, making him a rarity in the Bay Area.
"There's only a few of us taking the training to do it," he said. "But it's huge. Titanium is all we've had to offer for over 30 years. It's a very significant advancement."
Millions of Americans need implants to replace missing teeth or teeth damaged by root canals, crowns, and decay. Missing teeth can cause bone loss, bite problems, tooth movement and pain. The sooner an implant is placed, the better, Dr. Field said. Success rates for zirconia implants now rival that of titanium – about 93 percent, he said.
Zirconia implants have a healing time one month longer than titanium, and patients wear an Invisalign-like guard over the new implant until Dr. Field places a crown on top of it. PCCD performs the entire process in-house, resulting in a perfectly sculpted crown that ensures implant longevity. Other dental offices may contract out crown sculpting or other steps, which can lead to miscommunication and errors. "If an implant is not done properly, then you're setting yourself up for failure," he said.
A well-placed, and properly maintained zirconia implant can last a lifetime, and is available now at PCCD.
With thousands of patients and five years of double digit growth, PCCD is a leading cosmetic dentistry center in the country. The choice of beauty models and others in the entertainment industry, PCCD specializes in cosmetic dentistry, IV sedation, dental implants, Invisalign orthodontics, and general dentistry.
For more information, zirconia implant photos, and interview opportunities, please contact:
Peninsula Center of Cosmetic Dentistry
SOURCE Peninsula Center for Cosmetic Dentistry