Believe it or not, dental implants work because of a lucky accident!
Some form of dental implant has existed for a long time. There’s evidence that ancient Mayans used shells and crystals as replacement teeth. But the bone tissue in the jaw wouldn’t hold onto those; they would keep falling out.
In the 1950s, a scientist was studying how bones worked. He implanted some tiny titanium rods in a rabbit’s leg bone. After collecting his data, he went to remove the rods — only to discover they had fused with the bone. No other metal does this.
Once dentists learned of this accidental discovery, they realized an artificial root made from titanium would fuse with the jawbone. This is why dental implants have the same strength and stability as your natural teeth.