How Long Do Dental Implants Last: The Truth About Dental Implant Durability

Dental implants consist of metal frames or posts implanted into the jawbone beneath the gums. Once the metal post takes root, a false tooth or crown is then attached to the metal post. This makes the dental implant appear and function like a real tooth.

By Dr. Mike Alkateb

Royal Dental Spa Craigieburn

How Long Do Dental Implants Last: The Truth About Dental Implant Durability

Royal Dental Spa Craigieburn

Dental implant procedures are a great choice for people suffering from missing teeth. They are an efficient option that looks and feels like natural teeth and lasts for a long time with proper dental implant care and good oral hygiene like daily flossing and brushing.

But how long exactly do dental implants last? In this blog post, we explore the truth about dental implant durability so that you can make an informed decision about whether or not they are a good option for you.

Dental implants consist of metal frames or posts implanted into the jawbone beneath the gums. Once the metal post takes root, a false tooth or crown is then attached to the metal post. This makes the dental implant appear and function like a real tooth.

Summary of the Article:

  • Dental implants are an effective and natural-looking replacement for tooth loss or damaged teeth.

  • Dental implants are made from titanium, which is extremely durable and made from a biocompatible material. With proper maintenance of dental implants and regular check-ups, they can last for up to 25 years or more.

  • The benefits of dental implants include improved chewing, restored facial aesthetics, and improved speech.

  • The lifespan of dental implants depends on many factors, including the patient’s age, type of implant, dental hygiene practices, and underlying health conditions.

  • Dental implants can fail, although this is rare. The causes of failure can include health issues, trauma, or poor oral hygiene. Signs of dental implant failure can include pain, swelling, infection, or loose fitting.

  • Dental implants are generally better than other tooth replacement options, such as dentures and bridges, as they look, feel, and function like natural teeth.

How Long Can Dental Implants Last

Your tooth implant can last 10 to 15 years from wear and tear with proper maintenance of dental implants and regular check-ups. Some report having their implants for more than 25 years. Practising dental hygiene habits such as brushing and flossing can help keep your implant’s durability intact. 

The Components of a Dental Implant

  • Titanium post:
    The titanium post is the foundation of the dental implant that is secured into the jawbone. It has a remarkable durability rating among dental implant materials. This helps keep the implant last for many years with little maintenance.

  • Abutment:
    The abutment is a connector that attaches the artificial tooth to the titanium post. Its strength and durability help protect the artificial tooth from damage or misalignment and increases the overall lifespan of the implant.

  • Crown:
    The crown, or “cap”, is an artificial tooth made to look like natural teeth. It is attached to the abutment and completes the dental implant. Its shape and design are customised to fit the patient’s mouth and blend in with their natural teeth. The crown’s strong material makes it resistant to wear and tear and extends the life of the dental implant.

These three components comprise a dental implant and work together to create a durable substitute for missing teeth. Combining titanium’s strength and durability with a custom-made artificial tooth root and abutment, dental implants can last many years with proper maintenance.

Advantages of Dental Implants

  • Provide a stable, natural-looking smile:
    Dental implants look and feel just like real teeth. They’re also securely attached to your jawbone, so you won’t have to worry about them becoming loose or falling out.

  • Dental implant durability:
    Unlike alternatives such as dentures, dental implants are designed to last several years with proper care and maintenance. With proper oral hygiene, implants can look brand new for many years.

  • Prevent jawbone deterioration:
    Jawbones can deteriorate if teeth are lost and not replaced. Implants act like natural teeth, so they help keep your jawbone healthy and strong.

  • Dental implants can make eating easier: Eating can become difficult with dentures and dental bridges, as they can slip and break down easily. Implants are secured in place, so they’re easy to get used to and make eating a breeze.

  • Cost-effective:
    While the initial cost of dental implants may be higher than that of dentures, bridges, and other alternatives, they are designed to last for many years and require less maintenance, making them a cost-effective choice in the long run.

  • Improved overall health:
    Missing teeth can impact your health by making it more difficult to chew and digest your favourite foods. Implants provide the necessary stability to improve your oral health and, in turn, your overall health.

Factors Affecting the Lifespan of Dental Implants

  • Quality of bone:
    One factor influencing the lifespan of dental implants is the quality of the bone surrounding the implant. Poorly formed and weak bones will not successfully support a dental implant.

  • Oral hygiene:
    Good oral hygiene is essential for the longevity of dental implants. Brushing, flossing, and regular dental consultation will help keep inflammation and gum infections at bay so the implant can remain well-maintained.

  • Intra-oral forces:Dental implants are designed to withstand the forces created when chewing . Excessive force, however, can cause the implant to become loose or crack and fail.

  • Medications:
    Drugs such as corticosteroids, antibiotics, and chemotherapy can weaken the bone surrounding the implant and reduce its lifespan.

  • Patient’s age:
    Younger patients tend to have stronger and healthier jaw bones, allowing for better implant success.

  • Pre-existing medical conditions:
    Chronic health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and autoimmune disorders can weaken the bones and increase inflammation, making a successful implant less likely.

What Can You Do to Make Your Implants Last?

  • Watch The Foods You Eat
    Eating a balanced and nutritious diet can help protect your implants and keep them in good condition for years. Choose foods rich in vitamins and minerals, such as fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and low-fat dairy. Avoid sugary and acidic foods and beverages that can erode the surface of your implants over time.

  • Practise Good Dental Hygiene
    Proper dental hygiene is essential for keeping your implants healthy and long-lasting. Brush your teeth twice daily and floss once daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Additionally, use mouthwash to kill bacteria that can cause plaque and tartar buildup.

  • Avoid Teeth Grinding and Nail Biting
    If you are prone to grinding or clenching your teeth, this can strain your implants unnecessarily and cause damage. Biting your nails can also cause abrasion and corrosion of the implants over time. To avoid these habits, practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing and meditation, and wear a nightguard while you sleep.

  • Avoid Drinking and Smoking
    Heavy drinking of alcohol and smoking cigarettes can lead to dry mouth and an increased risk of gum disease, which can cause the gums to pull away from the implants and lead to infection. If you drink alcohol, limit it to one or two drinks daily and brush your teeth afterwards. For smoking, consider quitting altogether to avoid the risk of damage to your implants.

Caring for a Dental Implant

Dental implant care is an important part of maintaining your oral health, and it’s a simple yet important step to enjoying a healthy and beautiful smile.

Oral hygiene practices are key when it comes to the maintenance of dental implants. You should brush and floss at least twice daily, along with regular deep cleaning by your dentist. This helps keep food particles from getting stuck around the implant, which can lead to infection.

Additionally, it is important to maintain proper nutrition. Eating a balanced diet helps to keep your teeth, implants, and gums healthy. Avoid foods that can damage the implant or cause decay in the surrounding teeth.

Caring for a dental implant isn’t complicated but requires commitment. With proper care, you can enjoy the confidence and beautiful smile that comes with successful implant treatment.

Can Dental Implants Fail? What Are the Causes?

If dental implant surgery fails, it is usually due to one of the following causes: 

  • Body’s rejection of the implant
  • Poor implant placement
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Inadequate bone support
  • Overloading the implant

Checking if the implant is placed correctly and in the right location is important. X-rays and other imaging techniques can help to verify if the implant is placed correctly and that the surrounding tissue is healthy. Additionally, proper oral hygiene should be followed after the procedure and throughout the implant’s lifespan to prevent infection and increase the success of the implant.

To avoid implant failure, it is important to have the procedure done by an experienced dentist and to follow the post-op process instructions.

Signs That May Mean Your Dental Implants Need to Be Checked

If you experience any of these signs, seeking professional help immediately would be best.

  • Unexpected pain or discomfort:
    If your dental implants begin to feel painful, and there’s inflammation or swelling.

  • Loose implants:
    If your dental implants feel loose, it could be a sign of infection or other complications.

  • Discharge or bleeding gums:
    If any discharge or fluid is coming from the site where your dental implants are placed or you have bleeding gums, it is a sign that something might be wrong.

  • Discolouration of the implant:
    If the colour of your dental implant changes from its original colour, it could be a sign of a problem.

  • Bad taste or odour: If you experience an unusual taste or odour from your dental implants, it could indicate infection or other side effects.

Dental Implants vs. Other Tooth Replacement Options

Unlike dentures, bridges, and dental crowns, dental implants are the only option without existing teeth for support and stabilisation. For example, a bridge requires at least one existing tooth to be filed down and altered to fit the bridge in place. On the other hand, dental implants do not require any alteration to existing regular teeth and provide a natural, sturdy look and feel.

Additionally, unlike dentures, which can move and shift, dental implants are designed to be stable and will not require replacement over time with proper care and maintenance.

If you’re looking for a tooth replacement option that is reliable, durable, and aesthetically pleasing, look no further than dental implants. With their ease of use and permanence, dental implants are a great choice for replacing missing teeth.

Final Thoughts

Dental implants provide a reliable and safe replacement for missing teeth, offering individuals a lasting boost for their smile. With proper care, dental implants can last for many years. The important thing is to follow all the instructions your dentist provides and practice good oral hygiene. Regular check-ups and cleanings maintain that your dental implants will stay in good condition and last longer. Don’t hesitate to invest in a healthy, beautiful smile that will last you for years!

If you are considering dental implants, please visit Royal Dental Spa, known for its professional and compassionate care, personalised treatment plans, advanced technology, and successful outcomes in dental implants. Our professional team of dentists will give you a complete evaluation and advice for your needs. Call Royal Dental Spa today and learn how dental implants can improve your smile!

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