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Dental implants – Benefits and costs

Replacing a missing tooth isn’t done just for cosmetic reasons; it’s crucial for an individual’s overall dental health too. Dental implants have recently gained more popularity than other tooth-replacement options thanks to how these additions mimic natural teeth so closely. But there are several other reasons that make people prefer implants over dental bridges and dentures. Herein, we take a look at the many advantages of dental implants and understand how much they typically cost.

Benefits
Dental implants are wholly beneficial because

  • They resemble natural teeth
    This is the most significant advantage of having dental implants. The whole tooth structure is mimicked, allowing an individual to bite with nearly the same amount of force they could use with their natural teeth. Dental implants also come in all shapes and sizes. Patients and dentists often work together to design an implant that blends with surrounding teeth and fits snugly in the gap.
  • They help prevent bone loss
    With a single tooth or multiple teeth absent, the jaw bone in the empty spaces starts degenerating. Without a dental implant placed within a year of tooth loss, the bone area may decrease about 25%. Since a dental implant replaces the root as well as the tooth, only this tooth-replacement method helps prevent bone loss. Dentures, on the other hand, tend to become loose and rub against the bony ridge, accelerating bone loss.
  • They last quite long
    Dental bridges and dentures need to be replaced or repaired every 5 to 10 years. Whereas dental implants can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance. They are made from biocompatible metals like titanium or zirconium and integrated with the jawbone. Another plus point is that an individual need not buy any special product to clean or care for the implant. Brushing and flossing correctly and regularly, just like those for natural teeth, are all the maintenance needed for these implants.
  • Speech sounds natural
    Missing a few teeth, especially at the front, can affect an individual’s ability to articulate speech. Sometimes, people encounter similar problems when their dentures become loose and slide as they speak. Getting a dental implant is the best way to prevent oneself from such embarrassment. Like natural teeth, implants are deeply rooted and held firmly in place, allowing an individual to speak naturally and confidently.
  • No food is off-limits
    It’s no secret that dentures come with a list of foods to avoid. There is no such diet restriction with dental implants. Individuals are free to eat all their favorite foods, including chewy and crunchy food, as much as they like. Also, unlike dentures, since they can’t accidentally slip while eating in public, they allow individuals to enjoy meals like everyone else.

Costs
As far as replacing a tooth with a dental implant is concerned, it’s crucial to understand that the cost will likely vary from one individual to another. Typically, the cost of one dental implant ranges from $1,500 to $2,000. But this cost is per implant and not for the entire procedure. The procedure involves other expenses, such as the cost for

  • The crown
  • The abutment, i.e., the metal bridge between implant and crown
  • Tooth and root extraction
  • Office visits
  • Pre-op care
  • Post-op care

One must note that the crown is the most noticeable part and is custom-made for every case. And this dental implant cost may vary on the basis of the laboratory the dentist works with. Not to mention, the experience of the dentist is also a deciding factor for procedure cost. Those who prefer more experienced, highly skilled dentists will likely pay more for the procedure. Besides, the material used for the implants, i.e., titanium or zirconium, can also increase or decrease the price.

The abovementioned factors can help bring the cost for a single dental implant anywhere between $3,000 and $5,000. Unfortunately, most dental insurance providers out there don’t cover implants. But some may offer partial dental coverage for the implant crown cost. One must check with their insurance company before signing up for the procedure. One must crucially keep in mind that dental implants costs are a one-time investment. They can last for a lifetime if properly cared for.

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