This is a complex question with several factors to keep in consideration. If done properly, with the correct implant, in the correct circumstances, in the correct conditions, and with the proper maintenance, the implant should last a very long time. Here are some of the factors that can affect implant (and crown) life expectancy.

  1. The health of the patient

    It may be obvious that the patient should be in relatively good health.  As long as the patient is able to heal in a relatively normal way, dental implants can be very successful. This includes patients that are controlled diabetics, patients taking medications commonly used for osteoporosis, and other conditions that result in slower healing, can still have successful results.
  2. Any parafunctional habits

    Grinding and clenching can be very destructive to dental work and implants. There are many ways to compensate for this, such as splinting of the implants, modifying the bite, fabricating dental implant guards, and other techniques.
  3. The implant

    All implants are not created equal. There are significant differences between them. This is a science all to its own that few people (including dentists) really understand.  Some factors to consider are: The seal between the implant and crown (abutment), the screw thread design, the surface coating design, the taper or straight design, and the implant material itself. It is best to select an implant system tailored specifically unique to the patient, and not try to use one implant system for everybody; every persons situation and body is different.
  4. Quality and quantity of bone

    Research has shown that not only should there be at least 2.5mm of bone surrounding the implant for long term success, the density should also be adequate to support the biting force for eating. Patients are often told that they cannot have implants because there is not enough bone.  This is not true any longer. We can now grow the necessary bone with new technology.
  5. Quality and quantity of the surrounding soft tissue

    One of the problems that sometimes lead to implant loss, is inflammation around the neck of the implant (implantitis) leading to loss of bone, and the possible loss of the implant. One way to reduce this possible problem, and make the implant more resistant to this is to make sure that the gums around the implant is of the thicker tough type of gums (keratinized gingiva).  If there is not enough of this tissue, there are many ways to also grow this tissue.
  6. Maintenance

    Maintenance is probably the most important factor. If the area is not kept clean, the bacteria, plaque, tarter, and the resulting inflammation will destroy the tissues around the implant. Regular teeth/implant cleanings are mandatory. This may be the most difficult factor of all. Frequently, the dentistry is the easy part. Changing the habits of people is the more difficult part. It is important to realize that these are generalizations. It is best to think to long-term results. You only want to do this once, do it the correct way, and do not take shortcuts.

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How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

For patients who are missing many or all of their teeth, they might be looking for a more permanent solution to their smile problems. This is why dental implants have become a go-to choice for so many. These implants are a great way to hold a crown, fixed bridge or even a full overdenture in place without the need to compromise surrounding dentition. You are left with a full, beautiful and healthy smile that you’ll feel proud to show off.

What are Dental Implants?

A dental implant looks like a thin metal rod that is made out of titanium. This rod is inserted deep into the jawbone, where it is given time to fuse naturally with the surrounding bone structure. Once this happens, the implant is firmly and securely in place. It can withstand as much force and pressure as a natural tooth, so you can feel confident in its durability for years to come.

For Patients Who Are Missing Many Or All
What Are Dental Implants

How Long Will They Last?

Most dental implants can last for decades, and some may even find that they are a permanent solution to many of their smile problems. Once the implant is given time to osseointegrate (bond) with the surrounding area, it will not move, shift or crack. The restoration that is made to be placed over the implant will need to be replaced over time, but the implants themselves are incredibly durable. The other benefit to having implants placed is that they work on their own. This means that you won’t need to compromise or damage any other tooth in order to replace what is missing.

How to Extend the Life of Your Implants

The best way for you to extend the life of your implants is to keep your teeth healthy and clean. Bone loss can often occur as a result of gum disease, so preventing gum disease is the best way to keep your teeth as healthy and strong as possible. We recommend coming into the office every six months for a cleaning and an exam. The exam allows us to see the implant and how it is doing. In the rare case that it is loose or has cracked, we will help to provide you with retreatment of the area.

If you would like to come into our office to lean more about implants, call us today to speak with one of our knowledgeable staff members.