If you’ve lost one or more teeth and are considering dental implants, you probably already know that most dental implants are made of titanium. For some people, this can cause immediate concern, and can lead to serious problems after you get dental implants.

Titanium allergy is a good reason to look for alternatives to traditional dental implants. Zirconia implants have improved biocompatibility, making them a better choice for many people.

Titanium Allergy & Dental Implants | Rochester NY

Titanium Allergy Is Real

Let’s get this out of the way up front: titanium allergy is real. Some dentists will tell you that it’s not, but it’s been heavily documented in case studies and retrospective samples. We know this is a real phenomenon, and shouldn’t be dismissed.

What Is an Allergy?

Allergies are harmful immune responses. Usually, the body is responding to a substance that isn’t necessarily harmful, but treating it as if it were harmful. The body then mounts a defense against the intruder, which is what causes the symptoms.

Although most of us think of allergies as causing cold-like symptoms every year when the trees bloom, allergies can actually cause many different types of responses. One type of allergy causes your immune system to attack not the foreign material, but your own cells. Other times, you might experience a diffuse reaction, with skin rashes occurring throughout the body. Some allergic responses are limited to exactly where the allergen is located. Allergic responses can be immediate and dramatic. Others can develop slowly over time, and may not produce immediately recognizable effects. A dentist who doesn’t want to believe in titanium allergy can dismiss or ignore these symptoms.

What Titanium Allergy Can Do to You

What happens if you have a titanium allergy and you get titanium dental implants? That depends. As we noted, allergy responses can vary widely. Some people experience ongoing pain where the titanium is located. Others get peeling or chapped lips (exfoliative cheilitis). Some people have reported serious skin rashes. Others get cold- or flu-like symptoms.

But the most common result of a titanium allergy is dental implant failure. About half of all reported titanium allergies related to dental implants result in implant failure.

Allergy Testing Every Time

At Contemporary Dentistry, we understand how important it is to get dental materials that are compatible with your personal body chemistry. Even materials that are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) may not be specifically safe for your. That’s why at our holistic dentistry practice, we always make it a policy to test for material compatibility. It’s a lot better to steer clear of potentially problematic materials than to try to deal with the reaction once it occurs.

We also reduce the risk of an allergic response by avoiding pure titanium implants. Instead, we use either a titanium zirconium alloy or pure zirconia dental implants.

If you are looking for a dentist in Rochester, NY who pays attention to the potential risks related to material allergies, please call (585) 244-3337 today for an appointment at Contemporary Dentistry.