Dental implants are now one of the leading long-term options for replacing missing teeth as they provide the same functionality and feel of natural teeth. But how long is “long-term” anyway? A dental implant consists of three primary components, all of which can last a lifetime with proper care. Pre-existing medical conditions or diseases such as diabetes, and implant misuse — chewing or ripping things that are too hard for teeth — are the most common causes of failure for implants, but good oral hygiene can keep your implants viable for a lifetime.
Perkins Dentistry is your destination in Dunnellon, FL for help having a long-lasting, comfortable smile with dental implants.
What Is A Dental Implant Made Of?
Implants last so long because of what they’re made of:
1. Implant – The titanium or zirconia post that is surgically placed in the jawbone of a patient and serves as a root for the crown.
2. Abutment – The abutment is fastened to the implant and holds the crown in place.
3. Crown – The crown is a ceramic false tooth that is attached to the abutment and provides the look and function of a natural tooth.
In general, the crown and abutment are more susceptible to damage than the implant itself because they are exposed and actively used in biting and chewing. The implant itself is screwed directly into the jawbone.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
With regular brushing and flossing, the implant piece itself can last decades — even a lifetime — assuming the patient receives regular dental check-ups every 6 months. Because of the normal wear and tear of chewing, the crown may require replacement after 10-15 years, but this is a much quicker and easier procedure than a full implant surgery. Mouth location is also a factor in how long implants last. Implants that replace molars are used to chew and grind food, which may lead to them wearing out faster than implants in the front of the mouth.
Dental Implants vs. Other Tooth Replacement Options
A dental implant is designed to permanently replace a missing tooth and has become the preferred option by dentists and consumers. A dental implant is a fully functional prosthetic tooth and can withstand biting or chewing without slipping out as can happen with dentures. This is because, unlike with dentures, implants are permanently placed and all cleaning, such as brushing twice daily and flossing daily, is done in your mouth as you alongside your own natural teeth.
Because they are embedded in the interior jawbone, implants don’t put stress on adjacent teeth, as dental bridges can since they are anchored to neighboring teeth.
How Can Dental Implants Fail?
Dental implants provide an indefinite replacement for missing or damaged teeth when properly cared for, but there are several factors that can cause their premature failure. Patients suffering from diabetes or other pre-existing medical conditions, such as cancer, have a higher risk of dental implant failure due to slower healing and more susceptibility to illness . Additionally, poor oral hygiene can lead to periodontitis — gum disease — which erodes the underlying jawbone tissue and could cause the implant to become unstable.
Dental Implants in Dunnellon, FL
If you are considering dental implants, you want to see the best implant dentist possible. Dr. Carter Perkins of Perkins Dentistry in Dunnellon, FL is a skilled professional with 33 years in practice. For a consultation with Dr. Perkins or his associate Dr. Barth about dental implants or any other dental concern, please call (352) 440-5827 or schedule online.