Frequently Asked Questions About Zirconia

What company makes the implants and are they FDA approved?

Z DystemsThe Swiss company Z-Systems that develops and provides the implants has had an excellent track record in ceramic implants and provides the necessary training and certification for dentists who want to incorporate or switch to metal-free implants.

Z-systems has FDA approval since October 2007 with approval number K 062542. For more information, visit their website.

Is Zirconia a metal?

Zirconia is short for Zirconium dioxide, which is a ceramic. Zirconium is a metal but its oxide is a ceramic, just like Aluminum oxide. Similarly, Calcium is a highly reactive metal but its compound, calcium phosphate, is what makes up most of the solid part of our bones.

What is the Zirconia implant exactly made of?

All implants are manufactured from Zirconia y-TZP-A Bio HIP bioceramic according to ISO 13356.

The zirconium dioxide suitable for use in implants has the following composition: 95% ZrO2 + 5% Y2O3.

For more information on the material see: Zirconium Dioxide Dental Implants.

Is there any radioactivity in these implants?

Tests show that the source of Zirconia used by Z-systems has radioactivity levels much lower than acceptable norms. http://sagemax.com/zr-fact.htm

Do Zirconia implants integrate with bone as well as titanium implants?

Studies so far show that Zirconia binds with bone at least as good as titanium, if not better. The BIC ratio (Bone-to-Implant-Contact) of Zirconia in some studies proves to be even superior than that of titanium. This is particularly true in the coronal (top) part of the implant, or the so-called crest of the bone.

Are Zirconia implants suitable for everyone?

Certainly not.  Smokers, diabetics and those with bleeding disorders are definitely not candidates. Other factors that increase the risk for implant failure are insufficient bone density or depth, a collapsed bite with insufficient clearance, uncontrolled gum disease, and those who do not fully cooperate in wearing the protective appliances during the healing phase.

Are there other options besides implants?

There are numerous options but they all have their pros and cons. The main advantage of not choosing an implant is the time factor. With a bridge or a partial one can have a missing tooth space restored within 3 weeks and be done with it. It may not be the most ideal option, and it may not feel as natural as an implant, but it is definitely over much quicker. To read more about all the possibilities and their pros and cons, see “Options For Restoring Missing Teeth

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