How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
If you’re looking for a permanent, reliable, and aesthetically pleasing solution for missing or damaged teeth, it’s time to get serious about dental implants.
Dental implants improve not only oral health but also the quality of life. With proper care and maintenance, they can last a lifetime. And unlike dentures, which require daily removal and cleaning, dental implants require no special maintenance beyond regular brushing and flossing.
In this article, we discuss the types of implants, their longevity, and what causes dental implant failure.
Types of Dental Implants
There are several types of dental implants available, each designed to meet specific needs and preferences of patients. The following are some of the most common types of dental implants:
- Endosteal implants: These are the most common type of dental implant, consisting of a small screw-shaped post that is surgically implanted into the jawbone. Once the implant has fused with the bone, an abutment is attached to the post, which serves as the anchor for the dental crown or other restoration.
- Subperiosteal implants: These implants are designed for patients who have a shallow jawbone or who cannot undergo bone grafting. Subperiosteal implants consist of a metal frame that is placed on top of the jawbone, with posts that protrude through the gums to support the restoration.
- All-on-4 implants: This is a type of implant system that allows for a full arch of teeth to be supported by only four implants. The implants are strategically placed to maximize support and stability for the restoration.
- Zygomatic implants: These are designed for patients who do not have enough bone in the jaw to support traditional implants. Zygomatic implants are anchored in the cheekbone, which provides greater stability and support for the restoration.
Mini implants: These are smaller than traditional implants and are often used to support dentures or other removable restorations. Mini implants can be placed with less invasive techniques and require a shorter healing time.
The choice of dental implant type depends on various factors, including the patient's oral health, bone density, and aesthetic preferences.
Longevity of Dental Implants
With proper care, dental implants are intended to be permanent. However, the longevity of dental implants depends on factors like the patient's oral hygiene habits, overall health, and the quality of the implant and materials used in the procedure.
Research studies have shown that dental implants have a high success rate. According to the American Dental Association, the success rate for dental implants is around 98 percent. The implant itself is made of titanium, which is a biocompatible material that allows it to fuse with the jawbone, creating a stable and durable foundation for the replacement tooth or teeth.
Once the implant has fused with the jawbone, it is capped with a restoration, such as a dental crown, bridge, or denture. The restoration is designed to look and function like a natural tooth, allowing the patient to eat, speak, and smile with confidence.
To ensure the longevity of dental implants, it is essential to maintain good oral hygiene habits, including brushing and flossing regularly and visiting the dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings. Patients should also avoid smoking and limit their alcohol consumption, which can affect the healing process and increase the risk of implant failure.
And while the implant itself is designed to be a permanent solution, the crown can detach due to normal wear and tear. Research shows that between 50 to 80 percent of crowns need to be replaced in 15 to 20 years.
Factors That Cause Dental Implant Failure
There are several reasons why dental implants may fail, including:
- Poor oral hygiene: Poor oral hygiene can lead to bacterial infection around the implant, which can cause inflammation and bone loss.
- Inadequate bone density: Dental implants require a sufficient amount of bone to support them. If there is not enough bone, the implant may not integrate properly, leading to implant failure.
- Incorrect placement: If the implant is not placed correctly, it may not fuse with the bone properly, leading to instability and eventual failure.
- Overloading: Placing too much pressure on the implant before it has fully integrated can cause it to fail.
- Infection: Infection around the implant can cause bone loss and lead to implant failure.
- Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or autoimmune disorders, can affect the success of dental implants.
- Smoking: Smoking can interfere with the healing process and increase the risk of implant failure.
It is important to note that while dental implant failure can occur, it is relatively rare. With proper care and maintenance, dental implants can last a lifetime, providing a permanent and reliable solution for missing or damaged teeth.
Learn More about Dental Implants
When you’re ready to restore your smile, we’re here to help! Springfield Healthy Smiles provides a wide range of dental services in Springfield, VA.