October 3, 2022
When it comes to replacing missing teeth, dental implants are often considered the gold standard. And while these awesome implants can effectively replace lost teeth in terms of look, feel, and functionality, it’s their lifespan that makes them even more impressive—they can last for a very long time if you take great care of them! Here’s more from your dentist about the expected lifespan of dental implants and some things you can do to ensure they last for a long while.
What Factors Influence the Lifespan of Dental Implants?
A dental implant is designed to be a permanent solution for missing teeth, whereas other options like dentures and bridges, though effective at replacing lost teeth, will inevitably degrade and fail over time. While these lesser solutions can still last for 10 – 15 years, dental implants can easily last for several decades to a lifetime with proper care.
There are a few primary factors that influence dental implant longevity:
- Osseointegration – After dental implants are placed, the titanium posts gradually fuse with your jawbone—this fusion is responsible for preventing bone loss and supporting your facial structure. But if osseointegration is delayed or interrupted for any reason, your dental implants might loosen and fail prematurely!
- Overall oral health – If you have dental implants, maintaining optimal oral health is more important than ever before! Failing to keep your mouth clean can cause issues like gum disease that can progress and irreversibly destroy your gum tissue, threatening your implants.
- Preexisting conditions – In some cases, patients who suffer from diabetes or other preexisting medical conditions, including cancer, are at a higher risk of implant failure.
How to Preserve and Maintain Your Implants
Fortunately, caring for your dental implants and setting them up for a lifetime of success is relatively easy! Here are some helpful tips:
- Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time using a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Floss daily, as it is just as important as brushing and plays a large part in the fight against gum disease—which will lead to implant failure!
- Avoid poor oral habits such as smoking, using tobacco products, chewing on ice, biting your fingernails, or using your teeth as tools or to open packaging.
- Visit your dentist for regular preventive care—they can also inspect and ensure the integrity of your implants.
There’s no doubt that receiving dental implants can do a lot for your smile and quality of life—but it then becomes a matter of taking good care of them and ensuring that your results last for a lifetime.
About the Author
Dr. Jonathan Ross attended the Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine for his dental degree and received his periodontal specialty training from the Medical University of South Carolina. His practice in Mayfield Heights is thrilled to offer a wide range of services including dental implants. If you have any questions about the lifespan of dental implants or would like to arrange a visit, you can contact Dr. Ross online or over the phone for assistance: (440) 461-6008.
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