Dental implants consist of special screws, usually made from titanium, used to tightly anchor a bridge or other dental restoration. The screw is implanted into the patient’s jawbone, then a set of artificial teeth is added, using the screw as a base. Generally, the restoration used is a bridge: A set of two or more false teeth that replace a number of contiguous missing teeth.
Dental implants are designed to be long-lasting. The screw itself integrates very closely to the bone material, reducing the odds of complication. Your dentist will check in with you several times after surgery to ensure proper healing. This is another reason why, by and large, a dental implant can be expected to last for a long time.
A dental implant is designed to last for life and usually never has to be replaced. Unlike a dental crown, which lasts only about ten years on average, a dental implant should endure for 20-30 years. However, it must be cared for correctly to extend its life.
How Can I Make My Dental Implant Last Longer?
The most important way to make your dental implant last longer is to brush your teeth and floss on a daily basis. By flossing every day and brushing at least twice daily, you prevent bacteria from eroding the teeth and the gums around your dental implant.
If you have a pre-existing medical condition that could influence your dental implant, you might have to take special steps to ensure that it lasts. Disclose your health status and medications to your dentist so you can plan treatment appropriately.
Last, but not least, remember that teeth used primarily for chewing are more likely to experience wear than teeth in the front of the mouth. Be cautious of foods and acidic beverages that can accelerate wear, and see your dentist regularly to keep your teeth healthy.
A dental implant should only be installed by an experienced dentist. A relationship with a dentist you trust will help you get the quality care you need to maintain your implant.