Dental implants are a common long-term solution to cosmetic dental issues and reduced chewing ability due to missing or damaged teeth. If you’re considering dental implants, one of the first questions you may have is, “how long do dental implants last?” Answering this question can help you gauge whether the procedure will be truly worth it.
What are Dental Implants?
A dental implant refers to a screw-like anchor used to replace tooth roots. By attaching to the jawbone and gum tissue, dental implants provide a stable base for artificial replacement teeth, including dental crowns, bridges, and dentures.
Dental implants can replace a single tooth or several teeth or as support for partial or full dentures. Dental implants are the most natural-looking way to restore teeth.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
So, how long do dental implants usually last? The answer to that question varies based on the type of dental implant:
- The average lifespan of a full dental implant is from 10-30 years, meaning they can last a lifetime! No other tooth replacement option lasts this long.
- Mini implants can’t handle as much force from biting and chewing as full dental implants. Therefore they have a shorter lifespan of about six to nine years.
- All-on-4 dental implants can also stand the test of time, lasting for 20 years or more. The posts in this type of dental implant never have to be replaced.
When Do Dental Implants Need to be Replaced?
Although dental implants are strong and likely to last a long time, there are some instances when you should have them replaced immediately, such as:
Infection Around the Implant
People with dental implants need to see their dentists for professional cleanings regularly. If the gum line is not cleaned, bacteria can reach the jawbone and cause serious damage, eventually forming an abscess at the base of the dental implant. As a result, the jawbone loses density, which can threaten the integrity of the dental implant.
Loose Implant or an Implant Falls Out
Before a dental implant falls out, it becomes loose. The only way to stop your implant from falling out entirely is to know the signs of a loose dental implant, such as:
- Visible bone loss
- Bleeding when you touch it
- Discolouration around the implant site
You should contact your dentist immediately if any of the above symptoms persist.
It’s critically important to get your loose dental implants fixed right away. When a dental implant falls out, bacteria can enter your bone leading to further damage to the area. Get your loose dental implant fixed ASAP to avoid complications
Sudden Sinus Problems
Although very rare, sometimes people may get sinus problems or infections due to dental implants impinging into their sinus cavities. When this happens, you and your dentist will decide whether to replace the implant or remove it for good.
The Implant Breaks
Excessive wear and tear on a dental implant can cause it to crack or break, often a result of biting into something hard or an injury to the mouth.
Healthy Smile, Happy Life
When properly cared for and maintained, dental implants are a long-term solution to cosmetic concerns, difficulty chewing, and bone and gum health concerns. If you’d like to learn more about whether or not dental implants would be a good fit for you, contact Dana Street Dental today.