How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

Dental implants are the only form of tooth replacement that actually prevent bone loss in your jaw. They are also the closest thing that dental technology has to match the strength and durability of your natural teeth. However, dental implants are also a significant investment and many patients want to know how long they last. 

Typically, dental implants last 15-20 years, however with regular brushing and flossing routines, the titanium implant screw can last a lifetime. 

The dental crown that sits on top of the metal implant needs to be replaced every 10-15 years, due to natural degradation, but the implant itself has extensive longevity. 

With regular dental visits every 6 months and proper cleanings, your implants last far longer than any tooth replacement alternatives available. 

Why Do Dental Implants Last So Long? 

In order to understand the unique longevity of dental implants, it’s important to first understand what they are made of. 

The dental implant itself is most often made out of titanium. Titanium is a special metal that is considered both biocompatible and resistant to corroding. 

Biocompatibility means that dental implants do not typically cause adverse reactions in the human body. Titanium is used most often in surgery to replace bones and teeth because the bone cells accept the metal, rather than rejecting it. This process is called osseointegration and it is why titanium is the most biocompatible metal. 

Your natural cells will grow around the titanium implant, which better secures it in the jawbone. Likewise, titanium does not corrode or degrade as quickly as other metals (think or iron and rust for example) this means that it can last safely in your body for decades, without breaking down or causing adverse effects. 

Therefore, your dental implant essentially becomes a part of your jaw. Unlike dentures or dental bridges, it does not require glue or adhesives to keep it in place. Instead, it becomes naturally integrated with your jaw bone on a cellular level. 

dental implants

Dental Implants Longevity vs Other Forms of Tooth Replacement 

Dental implants are the longest lasting form of tooth replacement. They can last a lifetime with proper care. 

In contrast, dentures last around 5 years before they require replacement and dental bridges can last for 10-15 years before they need to be replaced. 

Hybrid options such as implant supported dentures will need to be updated every 5-10 years to replace the denture abutments, but the implants themselves will last far longer. 

How to Care for your Dental Implants so they Last 

In order for your dental implants to last as long as possible, there are some things you can do to keep them in good condition. 

1. Maintain Excellent Dental Hygiene

Primarily, it is so important to regularly brush and floss your dental implant, along with your regular teeth, 2-3 times per day. Ideally you should clean your teeth after every meal. 

2. Get Regular Dental Check Ups

Likewise, It’s very important to regularly visit your dentist for check ins and general cleanings. This is a proactive way to keep your teeth and your implant healthy, your dentist will also be able to monitor for any signs of dental implant failure. 

3. Look After your Gums 

Your oral health extends to your gums as well. Be sure to brush your teeth along the gum line to avoid bacteria getting caught between the teeth and gums. Likewise, floss to catch bacteria that gathers between the teeth. Your gums will heal around the implant but while they are healing, be sure to follow your dentist's instructions to avoid any complications. 

4. Take Care Post-Operation

While your body is healing after your implants are installed, it is extra important to ensure a full recovery by following your post operative instructions. Take any prescribed medications for the required period of time, avoid eating hard or chewy foods and be sure to follow up with post operative check ups. 

Dental Implant Failure 

It is true that not all dental implants last. In rare cases, patients experience dental implant failure. This occurs in roughly 5-10 percent of cases. 

Dental implants fail for a variety of reasons, including habits such as smoking or chewing tobacco, gum disease, pre-existing conditions that affect immunity, lack of jaw bone, and having an inexperienced dental surgeon place the implants. 

Often, patients who experience dental implant failure do so shortly after the implants are placed. Typically within the first few months after surgery.

If you feel any signs of pain, swelling or infection after your dental implants are placed, seek emergency dental care. Your implants could be failing and your dentist can do a variety of things to help. 

If you do experience dental implant failure, revision surgery may be needed. However, do not give up hope. Some cases are more difficult than others but often, once the underlying reason for implant failure is resolved, there is a good chance your implants will last long into the future. 

What Affects Dental Implant Longevity?  

  • Poor oral hygiene 
  • Injury 
  • Wear and tear 
  • Pre-existing medical conditions (diabetes or cancer) 
  • Gum disease 
  • Dentists level of experience 
  • Location of the implant 
  • Metal sensitivity (rare) 

Get Dental Implants in Coquitlam, BC

Book your appointment with Glen Dental Centre for your dental implants today. Our team of experienced dentists can help to answer any questions you may have about dental implants. 

If you are looking for a long lasting, low maintenance tooth replacement solution, dental implants are the best option in the dental industry. 

Get a seamless smile that can last a lifetime with Glen Dental Centre in Coquitlam, BC. Contact us to book an appointment, we are looking forward to helping you achieve a radiant, healthy smile. 


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