Do Dental Implants Last Forever?

Dental implants are an excellent option to replace missing teeth. If you’re looking for a solution that can provide a natural look and feel to your new smile, then you cannot go wrong with the implant.

However, one concern many patients have regarding the procedure is how long it lasts. From the potential costs of the implant to how the procedure is done, it’s fair to say that many people expect their new smiles to last a lifetime.

Well, the good news is that with the right care and maintenance, you don’t have to worry about the lifespan of your implant. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about how long dental implants last.

How Do Dental Implants Work?

Dental implants are special prosthetics made of 3 elements:

  • Implant - A screw-like post, usually made from titanium, that gets inserted into the jaw to replace the missing tooth
  • Abutment - A connector element used to help attach the crown to the post
  • Restoration - The visible part of the dental implant, often a dental crown

How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

Dental implants are a permanent procedure designed to last a lifetime. However, it doesn’t mean the prosthetic is not susceptible to damage or regular wear and tear.

The good news is that usually, the part of the implant that suffers this damage is the dental crown. Even so, with the right maintenance, the crown can last 15-20 years, maybe even more.

The implant and the abutment are less likely to be damaged and need replacing. 

How Do Dental Implants Get Damaged?

The metal post and abutment are not indestructible, but cases, where you may need to replace them are rare and usually a result of an accident where a patient suffers a direct blow to the mouth.

Realistically, when talking about a damaged dental implant, you’re talking about a damaged crown. While it’s strong, it can still crack and chip because of:

  • Wear and tear
  • Improper oral hygiene
  • Chewing on hard foods or objects
  • Biting down on something hard
  • Accidents, etc.

Even if this happens, the dental crown can be easily replaced, effectively restoring your smile once again.

How to Properly Care for a Dental Implant

If you want to make it in the “20 years or more” crowd, you should:

  • Brush your teeth at least 2 times a day
  • Floss daily
  • Use fluoride products
  • Eat a balanced and healthy diet
  • Get a mouthguard to prevent tooth-grinding
  • See the dentist for routine appointments around twice each year

These are all great strategies to help you maintain a dental implant for decades. But if you’re wondering if implants are the right solution for you, Sarah S. Barker, DDS, is happy to help you find out.

Book a dental implant consultation at Cardinal Family Dentistry online, and stop by our office to find out how to get your dream smile.

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