Dental implants are growing in popularity because they are more secure and longer lasting than alternatives such as dentures. You may be interested in getting dental implants for these reasons, but you have also heard that it can be pricey. Now what?
While it is true that dental implants are not cheap, there is a good reason why. Dental implants require
- Sturdy materials,
- A clean and cleared implant space
- And a skilled professional to place the implant.
We want you to be informed so you can make the best decision. In this article, we are going to look at how dental implants work, the average cost of dental implants in San Diego, what exactly goes into a dental implant procedure and explore the risks and benefits of dental implants.
Dental Implant Structure
If you have a missing tooth or need a tooth pulled and replaced, dental implants offer a sturdy replacement for your tooth. Dental implants are fixed into your jawbone, so they stay in place much like your natural teeth.
Before the procedure can begin, an x-ray or CT scan of your mouth must be taken. This image of your teeth will help the dentist identify a potential issue and determine whether a bone graft or tooth extraction is needed.
Once the dentist has determined you are ready for dental implant surgery, you will enter into a two-step process.
During the first stage of the surgery, a fixture is placed into the jawbone and left to heal. Once new cells have formed around the fixture and secured it, it is time to move on to the
second stage of the procedure. Please keep in mind that it can take several months for the fixture to set in the jawbone.
A healing cap is placed on top of the fixture to allow the gums to heal and shape around the cap. Once, the cap is removed, the abutment is ready to be installed.
The abutment holds the crown, bridge or denture into the fixture. Pain medication, antibiotics, or steroids may be prescribed flowing the procedure.
Now that you know how dental implants are installed, we will discuss the average cost of dental implants in the San Diego area.
The cost of dental implants depends on many factors. The first consideration is whether you are seeking a single tooth implant, multiple implants, or a whole mouth implant.
Single tooth implants are the most common dental implants procedure performed. The cost of the fixture and procedure is separate from the cost of the abutment and crown.
A fixture implant can cost anywhere from $1,000-$2,000. The abutment and crown cost between $500 to $3,000. So, the average cost of the two-step dental implant process ranges from $1,500-$5,000.
The number of teeth that need to be replaced and the location of the teeth can affect the price of the implant.
A bridge implant can range in cost from $3,000 to even as high as $30,000.
If the teeth are adjacent, then multiple single implants will have to be installed instead of a bridge.
Full Mouth Implants
Denture implants are the costliest of all the options but may be the only choice if you are needing several teeth replaced.
The average cost of full mouth implants ranges from $7,000 to $35,000.
If additional teeth need to be pulled so the denture can be installed, that will add to the cost of the procedure.
Every person is different, so the cost of dental implant surgery varies greatly. Some additional cost may arise include:
- A bone graft
- The material the crown is made of
- Tooth extraction
- Replacement of a fixture that did not set
- Medications following the procedure
If you are lacking the jawbone density needed to implant the fixture, a bone graft may be needed. A bone graft can come from bone elsewhere in your body, from a cadaver, or from animal bone.
There are also, different types of crowns to choose from including porcelain and metal fused, all metal, zirconia, and metal-free ceramic.
A metal-free crown requires more work to create so the cost is higher, ranging from $1,000-$3,000. Zirconia or all metal crowns cost around $750-$2400. The most cost-effective option is porcelain and metal fused crowns, which run $500-$1500.
If you need a bridge or full mouth implant, then additional teeth may need to be extracted before the implant is installed. Likewise, if your fixture did not set properly in the jaw bone, then the fixture will need to be removed and other options explored.
Medications following a procedure are also very common. Pain relievers, antibiotics, and steroids for swelling are all types of medication that may be prescribed.
These costs may seem daunting, but dental implant insurance and dental discount plans are available in some cases.
Dental Implants Cost Chart
TypePrice RangeSingle Implant$1,500 - $5,000Bridge Implants$3,000 - $30,000Full Mouth Implants$7,000 - $35,000
The Cost of Experience
One factor that may affect the cost of dental implants is the medical professional who performs the procedure. Since so much goes into a dental implant procedure, you want to make sure you have an experienced professional working with you.
The American Academy of Implant Dentistry provides a way for you to search for credentialed dentists. Dental implants are different for everyone, so working with an expert in the field is essential. Established in 1951, the AAID requires their accredited dentists to have advanced training and experience, so you know you are getting the best for your money.
The AAID recommends finding out these facts before choosing a dental implant specialist:
- How many procedures have they performed?
- What is their success rate?
- What are their training and education?
- Do they have before and after pictures of previous clients?
- What are the pros and cons of dental implants? (they should be able to give a detailed answer)
The more experience your dentist has, the less likely you are to have trouble. However, it is important to keep in mind that complications can still arise even with the most skilled of dentists.
Possible Complications and Side Effects
Some of the risks associated with dental implants include:
- The fixture not adhering to the bone
- Infection at the implant site
- Nerve damage
- Prolonged pain
- Sinus problems if the implant extends into the sinus cavity
- Trouble eating or drinking immediately following surgery
- Trouble speaking because of swelling
- The possible risks far outweigh the benefits in most cases, however.
Benefits of Dental Implants
You may be seeking dental implants for a variety of reasons. Dental implants offer comfort and functionality as well as aesthetic appeal.
Dental implants do not require special adhesive, which can slip and move around throughout the day. Dental implants are easier to clean because they function just like your regular teeth.
Dental implants are also permanent in most cases. So thought the cost of implants may seem like a lot, it is a one-time cost instead of a reoccurring cost.
Hopefully, this article has helped you better understand how dental implants work and the costs associated with getting dental implants. If you are ready to speak with a professional about dental implants, Smiles By Design San Diego is here for you.
Dental Implants are our primary specialty. Feel free to browse our testimonial page and learn more about the experiences of our former and current patients.
Reach out anytime for questions or to schedule an appointment.