How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

06.06.2024

Dental implants are a significant investment, but as the only permanent restoration for a tooth available, it’s often a worthwhile investment. Before starting any restorative treatment, it’s important to consider the lifetime cost and value of the treatment.

Patients often have questions about how long they can expect their dental implants to last. This will allow them to budget for follow-up treatments in the future. As with all dental restorations, it would be impossible to confirm the lifespan of the treatment, as every patient is different.

How you care for your teeth at home and other lifestyle factors will greatly influence how long your dental implants last. Since the implant is made up of different components, each one will have a different expected lifespan.

Dental implants are made up of a titanium screw, an abutment, and the final restoration, which could be a crown, bridge or denture. Let’s explore each part in more detail…

How long does the implant last?

The first component of the dental implant is the titanium screw. This is placed in the jawbone where it bonds to the bone to create a solid anchor foundation for the restoration. This part of the restoration should last a lifetime.

Provided there are no health issues that contribute to the implant being rejected, you should not face any problems with the implant breaking down or failing over time.

How long does the abutment last?

The abutment is commonly made of titanium, but zirconia may also be used as this is closer to the shade of your natural teeth. Like the implant, this is a highly durable part of the restoration and you shouldn’t see any issues with this breaking down or needing repair for a lifetime.

How long does the restoration last?

The final restoration attaches to the abutment to restore your smile. This could include a crown, bridge or full denture. These restorations are typically made of porcelain, zirconia, metals or a mixture.

This is the part of the implant that is most likely to require a repair or replacement in your lifetime. In general, a restoration will last for around 10-15 years. If you grind your teeth at night, it might require a replacement much sooner. Those who are very careful with chewing and follow the aftercare advice are more likely to see their implants last much longer.

How can I ensure my dental implants last a long time?

There are simple home care tips you can follow to extend the life of your implants. This includes:

  • Following advice from your dentist for cleaning your teeth and implant at home

  • Attending regular checkups and dental hygienist cleanings

  • Avoiding very hard foods such as brittle or hard sweets, ice and chewy sweets like caramel

  • Quitting smoking before treatment and not taking this up again after treatment

Are dental implants good value?

Dental implants represent excellent value for money over the lifetime of the restoration. However, it’s important to consider the cost of future repairs and replacements. Your dental restoration will also be at risk of staining, so you will want to ensure you visit the dental hygienist for a professional cleaning periodically.

Your dentist can advise you on the ideal schedule to help maintain your oral health and extend the life of your dental implant restoration.

If your crown/ bridge restoration comes loose, you should visit the dentist as soon as possible for an emergency restoration. This can help to avoid further damage to your surrounding teeth. You should also visit the dentist if you have pain around the implant site or if your implant feels loose.

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