How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
Dental implants provide a replacement for teeth that are missing or need to be extracted. Of the options available for artificial teeth, dental implants are the latest technology and are considered to be the highest quality.
If you’re considering getting one or more dental implants, you probably have some questions about them such as how they work and how long they last. Here’s the essential information about dental implants to help you make an informed decision.
What Are Dental Implants?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth and root system. The dental implant itself is the root portion that is surgically placed in the jaw bone. It is a post made of titanium with threads like a screw to help it fuse with the bone and form a solid bond. Once it is bonded an abutment and crown can be added to complete the restoration.
When multiple or all of the teeth need to be replaced, 4-6 dental implants can be placed in the jaw to provide support for an implant supported bridge or implant supported denture. Implant supported dentures stay in place more securely than traditional dentures that rely on suction and adhesives, making them more comfortable and functional.
Average Lifespan of a Dental Implant
A dental implant is expected to last 20 to 30 years or more. Once the process of osseointegration, or fusion with the bone, is complete a dental implant could last a lifetime. However, there are those instances where one may be lost prematurely. This is not a problem though. The area can be rebuilt with a bone graft and once healed, a new implant can be reimplanted and a new restoration fabricated. On the other hand, the prosthetic portion attached to the implant, the crown, bridge, or denture, may need to be replaced after about 10-15 years. Dental prosthetics are most often made of porcelain because it is strong and resembles natural tooth enamel. Although porcelain is durable, it can eventually wear down or become damaged over time.
What Factors Affect the Lifespan of a Dental Implant?
How long a dental implants lasts depends on a number of factors:
- Accurate placement. A key factor in the success of a dental implant is accurate placement. Guided placement technology makes it possible for dentists to place dental implants at the proper angle and depth for optimal support.
- Jaw bone structure. Before a dental implant can be placed it is necessary to make sure there is sufficient bone structure in the jaw to support an implant. If the bone is not thick enough or strong enough, the dental implant may not last.
- Oral hygiene. It is important to take good care of your teeth and gums. Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once a day will help your dental implant last longer.
- Smoking and tobacco use. One of the most common causes of dental implant failure is smoking and chewing tobacco. These habits restrict the blood vessels and irritate gum tissue, which can interfere with healing after implant placement.
- Follow up care. After dental implant placement it is important to follow your dentist’s instructions for follow up care. You’ll need to be careful about what you eat and drink and take special care when brushing and flossing. You also need to go in for follow up appointments to monitor your healing progress.
Where Should I Go For Dental Implants?
Many dental practices offer dental implants, but South Florida Sedation Dentistry is dedicated to making your experience as comfortable and relaxing as possible. If you feel anxious or nervous about dental procedures, there are a variety of sedation options available to make your experience stress free.