What will dental implant surgery be like in twenty years? While we have no way of knowing exactly what the future holds, chances are that it will be a lot more advanced than it is today. On what is such a prediction based? Often, the best way to anticipate where something is going over the next 20 years is to take a look at how far it has come over the past 20 – and dental implant surgery has come a very long way.
Once a dental restoration option that was considered experimental and of limited use in just a few ideal patients, dental implants, Washington DC dental professionals will tell you, are now considered the standard of care for tooth loss. With advances in materials, technology and surgical techniques over the past two decades, dental implants have become a reliable and effective treatment for most dental patients. Given that track record, it is virtually certain that implant dentistry will continue to advance, yielding greater improvements in the safety and accuracy of these procedures, as well as in their functional and aesthetic results.
Dental Implants Washington DC: Advances Over The Past 20 Years
Over the last 20 years, great strides have been made in implant dentistry, making implant-based dental restoration – once only an option for patients in perfect health who had plenty of healthy bone tissue in the jaw – available to a wider range of patients. Today, bone quality and quantity can be improved in patients with bone loss, due to more reliable bone grafting materials and techniques. Three dimensional imaging technology has allowed more precise implant placement, enhancing safety and prompting the development of specialized implants and surgical techniques that can, in many cases, eliminate the need for bone grafting.
Computer guided surgery and virtual surgical planning have led to less invasive procedures, resulting in faster healing, as well as making dental implant surgery safer and more easily tolerated in patients with underlying health issues. The development of immediate-load dental implants has significantly reduced the time many patients spend waiting for their new smile. These advances and many more have made dental implants a save and reliable treatment for a great many Washington DC dental patients who would have been turned away 20 years ago, left with no choice but to settle for less desirable options, like fixed dental bridges or removable dentures.
Dental Implants Washington DC: What’s Next?
A great deal of innovative research is underway in the field of dental implantology, which may yield some insight into what new developments we can expect over the next 20 years. One of the most promising areas researchers are exploring is nanotechnology and how it might be used to improve diagnosis, treatment and pain relief. Nanotchnology may also, in the future, be used to regenerate of cells and tissues, or aid in the prevention or resolution of infection or gum disease by neutralizing bacteria – and these are just a few of the potential uses that are currently being investigated. Nanotechnology, according to the Open Journal of Implant Dentistry, is expected to have an impact across the entire practice of implant dentistry.
While any discussion on up-and-coming innovations and research in implant dentistry is largely speculative, what is certain is that materials, technology and techniques will continue to improve. Meanwhile, what has already been accomplished is quite substantial. More patients than ever before are being treated with dental implants, providing them with a long-lasting solution to tooth loss that looks, feels and functions like natural teeth.
If you want to schedule a dental implant consultation with one of our oral surgeons, contact our office in the Washington, DC area at (202) 386-7100.