Dental Implants: Are They Worth the Cost?

Missing teeth can be an inconvenient problem. Whether it is due to age, an accident or oral care issues, replacing these teeth might be on your mind. There are a few things that should be known before you can decide if dental implants are right for you.

What are the benefits?

Dental implants are one of a few different options for those who are missing teeth. Though there are specific cases that may not allow for dental implants, in many situations, dental implants can be the most sensible and successful solution. Other options can leave individuals uncomfortable in multiple different ways, and some can be an impermanent solution that ends up costing more in the long run. With dental implants, individuals will get to use their implants as real teeth that are easy to chew with, blend in with their natural teeth, and they don’t require inconvenient cleaning and adhering as dentures do. In healthy patients who don’t need extra time for recovery or a great number of replacements, dental implants can also be a relatively quick replacement option. For younger patients and those who are only missing a few teeth, dental implants can be one of the best permanent solutions.

What are some of the drawbacks?

Dental implants cost significantly more upfront than other options like dentures, and they do require a more invasive procedure. Where dentures can cost only around a few hundred dollars, dentalimplants will cost a few thousand for a single tooth replacement, but they are drastically different solutions to different problems. To achieve the unbeatably secure feeling that dental implants provide, the replacement teeth are secured to the jawbone which causes discomfort for a short period after the procedure, but it is manageable without prescription medications. Furthermore, there are particular scenarios that can draw out the process of getting dental implants. Some patients may need more recovery time for their jaw bones to grow around the implants before their replacement teeth can be attached, and sometimes implanting the posts and getting the replacement tooth made can take multiple visits.

What are the alternatives to dental implants?

When it comes to false teeth, dentures are one of the more common options seen, but they are not as versatile as dental implants. Dentures are primarily used to cover larger areas of missing teeth, or when teeth are missing completely. For the elderly, dentures are one of the most common solutions to missing teeth because they are commonly missing more than just a few teeth that could be replaced individually. Furthermore, in the elderly and generally frailer patients, the surgery required with dental implants can be out of the question. The body needs to be able to recover quickly and the jaw bone must be able to grow strongly around the implants, so infirm patients and the elderly must use less invasive options.

What about bridges?

Another option that can be used in place of a dental implant is a bridge placement. Where a dental implant requires securing a metal post into the jawbone that a replacement tooth is attached to, a bridge replacement uses existing teeth as posts for replacements. The two teeth on either side of a gap are prepared as posts for a “bridge” of replacement teeth to be secured to. This option is less invasive in some ways, but it does sacrifice existing healthy teeth as posts, and cleaning beneath the middle unsecured tooth can be problematic. This procedure can also take longer than some dental implant surgeries, and is not quite as long lasting especially if the tooth loss is with an older patient expecting to lose further teeth. This is a good option for those that want the security and realistic look of dental implants but cannot afford dental implants cost. This option can also be good for those who don’t want or cannot have the surgery involved with dental implants.

So, are they worth it?

While dental implants cost can be prohibitive to many people in need of replacement teeth, they are by far the most permanent solution and can provide the closest possible thing to a new natural tooth. If this is your goal and you are a proper candidate for surgery, then there is no question of the value of this procedure.

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