Dental implantology is the procedure of replacing missing teeth and their supporting structures with artificial prostheses anchored to the jawbone. Early traces of dental implants are found around 600 AD in the Mayan civilization. Archaeologists found a fragment of a mandible of Mayan origin which had three tooth-shaped pieces of shell placed into the sockets of three missing lower incisor teeth.
So it will not be wrong to conclude that to successfully replace missing teeth and their supporting structures with artificial teeth is an ancient practice.
In 1952 P I Branemark, a Swedish orthopedic surgeon discovered the phenomenon of Osseointegration of titanium implants. P I Branemark described it as “a direct structural and functional connection between ordered living bone and the surface of a load-carrying implant”. This was the beginning of evidence-based dentistry. As widely believed this laid foundation for further developments in implant design, geometry, materials, and techniques as we see today.
Improvement of implant design and surface modifications are two major areas of development contributing to enhancement in the process of Osseointegration.
As a result, nowadays we see a multitude of materials, implants, components, and techniques related to dental implants. For each dental patient, selecting materials, techniques or recommending a particular modality of treatment is unique and is based upon the clinical assessment.
In each individual case, the clinician has ethical and medico-legal obligations to base their decision and recommendations on the best available current evidence.
In order to do so, an up-to-date knowledge base and critical appraisal of the current evidence is very essential. This concludes a brief about dental implants and some of its history