It’s not unusual, when discussing tooth replacement options with a patient, to hear, “Oh, Dental Implants are too expensive,” when they are mentioned. However, once I go deeper into the various options, associated costs, long term benefits, and actual ‘truisms’ of Dental Implants, most patients become more open to this method of replacing teeth.
Dental Implants are designed to last your lifetime. They restore your ability to bite, chew and laugh with confidence. They do not decay, need root canals or compromise neighboring teeth or bone structure.
For many, preventing jaw bone shrinkage is the leading appeal of Dental Implants. Because Dental Implants are positioned in the jaw, they recreate stimulation to the bone that helps to preserve the bone’s mass. This was one of the roles of natural tooth roots. Without this stimulation, the bone goes through a process known as resorption, which is a gradual but continual melting away of bone mass.
Losing jaw bone mass is what causes changes in one’s facial appearance, which tends to create an appearance that is far older than one’s actual age. Bone loss causes facial muscles to detach, which leaves you with jowls. The mouth turns inward more and deep wrinkles form. This causes the corners of the mouth to turn downward, even in a smile. Eventually, the chin points and the nose moves closer to the chin, creating a ‘granny look.’
Resorption is also the reason that dentures, when first made, will eventually begin to move and slip. The decline in the bone’s mass affects the fit of a denture that was designed to fit the unique contours of the gum ridge. Because resorption reduces bone height, the ridge that holds the denture flattens out.
To imagine this, think of how a drawer is designed to move in and out easily, guided securely in place by fitting onto firmly placed slides. Now, imagine these slides wearing down a bit each time you open or close the drawer. Eventually, the slides will no longer provide a dependable path for the drawer and the drawer will wobble. As the slides wear away further, the drawer will jiggle back and forth as it opens or closes and with more difficulty.
The cost for Dental Implant treatment is determined, for the most part, by the number of implants placed. There is often a misconception that an implant is needed for each missing tooth. However, while you may be missing several or even a full arch (all upper or lower) of teeth, several strategically-placed implants can often provide sufficient support .
For example, when several teeth are missing in one area, one implant can often support a bridge of two or more teeth. The added bonus of using an implant to support a bridge is how it helps protect the integrity of neighboring natural teeth. This is because it is not necessary to have teeth shaved down for crowning simply to serve as supports for a bridge. While a traditional crown-&-bridge combination relies on adjacent teeth as support, an implant uses the firm foundation of your jaw bone.
Fewer implants can also be used when is a full arch of teeth is missing. In most cases, several implants can be strategically positioned to support an arch of teeth. By using a conservative number of implants, non-removable teeth can be securely ‘fixed’ to many implant types in an affordable manner .
I want every patient to have the tooth replacement option that meets their individual goals and makes them just as happy now as it does ten years from now. If you feel the obstacle to achieving a confident smile is due to implant treatment cost, I encourage you to arrange a consultation. I’ll explain the implant systems that will work best for you. You can also speak with our Financial Coordinator to go over payment options. These are structured to help you enjoy the benefits of Dental Implants while making affordable payments.
Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for a no-cost, no obligation consultation..