Our last blog installment ended just as Emerginnova Founder and President, Michael Foley, was about to share the advantages ceramic implants have over conventional titanium implants.
At that point we had to call a timeout but for a good reason – he had a dental appointment.
For those who missed Part 1, Emerginnova specializes in distributing metal-free ceramic implants and is the exclusive North American distributor of ZERAMEX® ceramic dental implants. ZERAMEX® is the leading ceramic dental implant in the world.
Based in Zurich, Switzerland, ZERAMEX® dental implants have earned the quality reputation associated with similar Swiss brands like Perrier, Riccola and my personal favorite, Häagen-Dazs.
As Mike shared in our earlier post, ceramic implants have been around for 30 years. Until recently the biggest knock on them was they were brittle and could break more easily than titanium implants.
That’s not the case anymore, Foley noted in a recent email interview.
“The materials have evolved a lot. ZERAMEX® uses bio-friendly HIP ARZ Zirconia with ceramic. Our use of a different extraction and production process has helped our new ceramic implants to work more like titanium implants,” he wrote.
One difference in the extraction process is the Zirconia ZERAMEX® uses is made from the oxide of Zirconium. Zirconium is a metal and in its oxidized state it has all the benefits of a metal (magnetic, heat transference, strength) but doesn’t degrade like Zirconium and titanium.
Secondly, ZERAMEX® presses, sinters and heats the Zirconia before pressing it into a rod. “In this state it becomes exceptionally strong,” Mike says. “Two thousand megapascal vs 1200 megapascal for titanium.”
For those readers not fluent in pressure units and newtons (neither was I), suffice it to say 2,000 is stronger than 1,200 and that ceramic implants are much tougher than they used to be.
“First is the implant that is surgically placed into the bone as an artificial tooth root – just like a titanium implant,” he noted. “Second is the abutment which is the crown and tooth portion, and third is the Vicarbo® screw which locks the root and tooth together.”
“The lateral forces pressing in between the implant and the abutment tightly seal the connection, preventing bacteria from entering the affected area and creating implantitis.”
“This is the sleeping dragon of dental implants,” Mike admitted. “We say that titanium implants have clinical success of 98 percent, but we don’t include the 20 percent of patients that get inflammation around the implant and have to return to the dentist for some sort of (gum) tissue treatment,” Mike said.
With his keen interest in bio-friendly dental solutions, this metal-free option is a huge factor for Mike and one of the primary reasons why he formed Emerginnova as a company focused on bio-friendly dental treatment.
Another selling factor for ZERAMEX® implants is that Zirconia is more compatible with bone structure than conventional titanium.
“Titanium is a metal. Metals conduct heat, they are magnetic, and different metals in the mouth can actually create a galvanic reaction,” Mike said. “All of these facts lead to increased bacteria and plaque attracting to the surface of the implant.”
“We are also finding that ions of the titanium slough off the surface of the implant and titanium ions have been found in lymph nodes,” he noted.
“Ceramic implants do not corrode and are found to attract just ten percent of the bacteria and plaque of titanium implants. That’s the kicker for me – the soft tissue results,” Mike said.
Another benefit with the 3-piece ceramic implant
is if the crown or abutment must be removed, it is much easier to do so as compared to the earlier 1-piece ceramic models.
“Dentistry has been slow to accept that patients are eager for natural and whole-body friendly solutions and are willing to pay a premium for them,” he wrote.
Mike says when talking to skeptical dentists about patients that are willing to pay a higher premium for ceramic implants, he often uses the analogy how whole foods and organic products were once limited to shoppers who liked healthy, non-processed foods.
“Now every soccer mom shops for organic options and gladly pays a considerable premium for their health.”
What it all comes down to is simple in Mike’s view:
“Are you willing to pay 10 percent more for an aesthetically natural tooth/bone colored implant that is more friendly to your soft tissues and doesn’t risk leaking toxic ions throughout your body?”
“It was obvious to me that if I was a patient, I would seek out and demand a ceramic implant,” he said.
Thanks for reading Agent Straight-Talk. For more information on ceramic dental implants like the FDA approved ZERAMEX® XT, click here. For the latest in oral health developments and dental plan options, please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
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