Fiber Laser Surface Texturing / Coating of Dental Implants for Modification of Surface Properties
When it comes to modifying surface properties of materials precisely and accurately, fiber laser technology is a seriously effective tool for achieving this.
There are benefits to this type of fiber laser application in various industries, including in the world of dentistry where the production and maintenance of implants are being enhanced at the moment.
Here is a look at how fiber laser surface texturing is relevant in this context and the ways in which it is already being utilised.
Importance of osseointegration
Dental implants, like many other prostheses which are permanently affixed to the human skeletal infrastructure, need to be able to work effectively in combination with the bones in which they are embedded. This process, known as osseointegration, has been developed over the decades, with experts realising that textured surfaces are essential to ensuring that implants are stable and well supported by the tissues that will grow around them.
Because of this, dental implants need to be created with textured surfaces, rather than installed in their unaltered, freshly machined state since this will leave them excessively smooth and less suited to the role they are set to fill.
It is not just sturdiness that is improved by surface texturing; some studies suggest that this approach can actually give implants antibacterial properties that are obviously useful for preventing future infections. As such patients’ mouths can remain healthier for longer.
Fiber lasers outperform older techniques
Texturing the surface of dental implants made of materials such as titanium can be completed in several ways, including through the application of chemicals or by sand-blasting to remove particles at random. However, there are downsides to these approaches, such as a higher likelihood of errors and imperfections occurring, the chance for contamination to occur and the time and money involved in carrying them out.
Firstly, because the whole process is controlled digitally, it is highly repeatable and immensely accurate, meaning that there is no need to rely on the judgement of a human worker. Furthermore, the physical properties of the material’s surface can be altered without the need for any direct contact, eliminating contamination potential.
Another perk of fiber laser surface texturing for dental implants is that there is no need to mask any other part of the component which is being worked on since only the exact area which requires texturing will be impacted by the precise movements of the beam. In addition, it is efficient and sustainable, since it does not involve harmful chemicals or the use of any other materials.
Fiber lasers can even be used for marking so that implants can be rendered uniquely identifiable with coding etched on the surface. Studies have even shown that the antibacterial qualities of the textured surface can be enhanced because lasers can create nanostructures in the material that is otherwise impossible to reliably generate.
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Image Credit: Volodymyr007
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