Shedding Light on Our Treatments: The Lifespan of Dental Implants

Dental implants are small metal posts that look like a screw, usually made of titanium material, inserted into a patient’s jaw bone through minor dental implant surgery. They act as tooth roots of your artificial teeth used to replace missing teeth. Many patients are curious as to the lifespan of dental implants. While it can last many years and the success rate is high, teeth implants don’t last forever. Read on to find out more.

What Is the Lifespan of Dental Implants?

This is different for every person. On average, teeth implants can last for 10 to 15 years. But if you take care of them and follow your dentist’s instructions, they may last up to 25 years or more.

What Factors Affect the Lifespan of Dental Implants?

There are a few factors that affect the life of your implants. These include:

  • Your oral hygiene
    Your oral health primarily relies on your dental hygiene. If you don’t brush and floss regularly, bacteria can build up around your implant, leading to gum disease. As a result, your implant may loosen and eventually fail.

  • Your lifestyle habits
    If you smoke or use any other tobacco products, it can reduce the lifespan of your implants. Some studies show that the nicotine in tobacco products can be absorbed into the bloodstream and cause vasoconstriction. This narrowing of blood vessels can cause reduced blood flow to the gums and impede healing, eventually leading to implant failure.

  • The quality of your dental work
    You should choose a qualified and experienced dentist for your procedure. Dental implant surgery is an invasive procedure; if your dentist doesn’t place the implant properly, it can lead to implant failure. For example, if the implant is placed too close to the nerve, it may cause damage to the nerve, leading to pain. Removal of the implant may be necessary in this case.

  • Your overall health
    Your overall health can also affect the lifespan of your dental implants. A medical condition, such as uncontrolled diabetes, can cause problems with the healing process after dental implant surgery and may lead to implant failure.

  • Your habits
    People who grind or clench their teeth are more likely to damage their teeth implants.

  • Type of implant
    The type of implant you choose can also affect its lifespan. For example, titanium implants are the most commonly used and tend to last longer than other materials.
Timberlands Dental Clinic Wanneroo

How Do You Care for a Dental Implant?

Here are tips on how to care for your dental implants to extend their lifespan:

  • Maintain good oral health by brushing your teeth and implants at least twice daily and flossing once daily. This helps remove plaque to avoid tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Visit your dentist for regular dental check-ups and cleanings.
  • Avoid smoking or using tobacco products. As mentioned, this can cause gum disease and implant failure.
  • Wear a mouth guard if you grind or clench your teeth at night.
  • Eat a healthy diet and avoid sugary drinks and snacks. These types of food help keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Can Dental Implants Be Replaced?

Dental implants are occasionally replaced, but it is more difficult and costly than the original implant surgery. In some cases, implant failure can be caused by infection, injury or poor oral hygiene. However, the most common reason for replacement is due to changes in the jawbone. Over time, the bone around the implant can shrink or recede, causing the implant to become loose. This can happen even if the implant is well-cared for.

Replacing a dental implant usually requires a second surgery to remove the old implant and insert a new one. The success rate for second surgeries is lower than for first surgeries, so it is generally not recommended unless necessary. For these reasons, it is important to choose an experienced implant dentist with a high success rate for first surgical procedures.

Final Thoughts

Dental implants are a popular and effective tooth replacement option with many benefits. They can last for many years with proper care. However, several factors can affect their lifespan, like poor oral health, not practising good oral hygiene, smoking, and other lifestyle habits.

If you have questions about dental implants or would like to know if you are a good candidate, contact us to schedule a consultation.

Timberlands Dental Clinic is a modern dental clinic equipped with the latest technology to provide positive results. Our team of experienced dentists have been providing this service for years and will be able to advise you if it’s suitable for you. During your appointment, one of the dentists will thoroughly examine your mouth, including your teeth, gums, and jaw. This is to determine if you are a good candidate for the procedure.

Frequently Asked Questions

An average dental implant cost may range between $5,000 to $7,000 per tooth. But if you need additional treatment, like bone grafting or sinus lift, you may have to pay up to \$11,000 for a single implant. These are just estimates and may go higher or lower based on a few factors. These include your dentist’s experience and their clinic’s location, whether or not you have insurance, and how many and what types of implants you need. Contact your dentist for a more accurate estimate because they base it on your specific case.

The three most common dental implants are endosteal implants, subperiosteal implants, and zygomatic implants. Your dentist will decide which is suitable for you, depending on your needs. An endosteal dental implant is the most common type and is placed directly into your jawbone.

A subperiosteal implant is placed on top of your jawbone but under the gum tissue. This dental implant is used for people with a shallow jawbone who can’t accommodate an endosteal implant. The last type, zygomatic implant, is a dental implant placed in the cheekbone. This is used for patients who have had significant facial injuries or trauma.

During your surgery, your dentist will numb the area with local anaesthetics. Once you’re comfortable, they will make a small cut in your gum to expose the jawbone. Next, they will place the titanium screw into the bone, close the gums with sutures and give time for your wound to heal and implant to fuse with the bone.

After a couple of months, your dentist will attach an abutment on top of the implant. This is a connector piece that attaches the prosthesis to the implant. Then, an impression of your mouth will be taken to be used to fabricate your prosthesis. Once made, your dentist will attach the prosthesis over your implant. The prosthesis can be a dental crown, bridge or denture.

The components of dental implants include the titanium screw that’s placed into the jawbone, the abutment that’s placed on top of the screw, and the replacement tooth or teeth that are placed on top of the abutment, which could be a dental crown, dental bridge, or a denture.