How Long Do Dental Implants Last? Discover What Affects Their Lifespan

How Long Do Dental Implants Last? Discover What Affects Their Lifespan

Dental implants offer an excellent solution for those looking for long-term tooth replacement. Looking and functioning just like natural teeth, implants are maintained in the same way. But how long do dental implants last? The quick answer is that it often depends on a patient’s choices and oral hygiene.   

Since the first placement of a dental implant in a human volunteer in 1965, advances in dental technology mean that implant failures due to functionality issues or rejection are rare. Nowadays, when an implant does fail, pre-existing medical conditions and diseases and misuse of the dental implant are the most likely culprits. 

When you get a consultation at your local dental clinic, a dentist will explain the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene during the procedure and for life. 

So, getting back to the question of how long dental implants last. One of the main reasons dental implants have the potential to last a long time is the high quality and durability of the materials involved. 


Long-lasting dental implant materials

A dental implant consists of three main components: the screw or post, an abutment, and a dental crown.

The titanium screw embedded into the jawbone is usually made from incredibly durable and long-lasting titanium. Because titanium is biocompatible, it fuses with the surrounding bone to become a permanent fixture in the mouth (osseointegration). 

The abutment that connects the implant with the dental crown is usually made from titanium, but other materials like stainless steel may sometimes be used. 

The dental crown is a false ceramic tooth mounted onto the abutment, providing a natural tooth’s aesthetic and function. 

The abutment and crown are typically more prone to damage and don’t last as long as the dental implant post because they are exposed and used actively for biting and chewing food. 



So how long do dental implants last?

With twice-daily brushing and flossing and regular dental check-ups, the implant screw can last a patient’s lifetime. However, according to studies, 50-80% of implant crowns may need to be replaced around the 10-15 year mark due to wear and tear. That said, maintaining excellent oral hygiene and adopting a cautious approach with the dental crown could help it last longer.

Location is also a factor when predicting how long dental implants last. Molar implants at the rear of the mouth are frequently used for chewing food, meaning they may not last as long as implants at the front of the mouth. 


What are mini dental implants, and how long should they last?

With a diameter of less than three millimetres, mini dental implants are narrower than other types of dental implants – roughly about the same size as a toothpick! 

Because of their diminutive size, mini dental implants (MDIs) can be used in patients suffering from considerable bone loss. MDIs are popular because the technique is more straightforward and less invasive. 

Often MDIs are used to secure removable dentures, although they can be used to replace single teeth. 

Like regular dental implants, MDIs are designed to be permanent. However, in a systematic review of four studies of MDIs supporting a single crown, researchers found no difference in how long they lasted compared to conventional dental implants. 

If you’d like to know more about mini dental implants and whether they can work for you, why not book with an implant dentist that offers a free consultation


What factors can influence how long a dental implant lasts?

While dental implants may last some people a lifetime, they can sometimes fail. In the main, implant failure typically happens when something disrupts osseointegration or the healing process. 

Factors that can cause an implant not to last as long as expected include:

  • Insufficient bone Dental implants, like natural teeth, rely on the bone for support. Dentists often use bone grafts to improve bone density to give the implant a better chance of survival. lifespan teeth implants st marys
  • Poor oral care A lapse in oral hygiene could lead to peri-implantitis, which could cause implant failure.
  • Smoking Smoking affects the blood flow to the affected area, negatively impacting healing and osseointegration.
  • Teeth grinding Bruxism can fracture the implant, loosening the screw and causing the implant to move and potentially fall out. 
  • Medical conditions Various medical conditions have been associated with implant failure, including osteoporosis, diabetes, a weakened immune system and bleeding disorders. 
  • Age Dental implants often don’t last as long in older people. This may be due to underlying bone or medical conditions. 
  • An Inexperienced dentist can contribute to the failure of an implant due to improper placement, the use of poorly designed implants, or attaching a crown before the implant is stable, amongst other things

Hopefully, the above information has answered your question, how long do dental implants last. 


The takeaway

Dental implants are designed to last a lifetime, but they sometimes fail. The secret to an implant lasting a long time is maintaining good oral hygiene combined with six-monthly dental check-ups. This way, a dentist can diagnose any problems and treat them early.

If you’re considering dental implants or worried that something is amiss with an existing implant, why not schedule a dental consultation near you in St Marys by calling on (02) 9158 6312. Pearl Dental Care work with our patients at every step to help their implants last a long time.



Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner. 





News Medical – History of Dental Implants

Healthline – Are Dental Implants Permanent?

National Library of Medicine – Dental Mini-implants

PubMed Central – Longevity and marginal bone loss of narrow-diameter implants supporting single crowns: A systematic review




Truth About Dental Implants – Are They Right For Me?

Truth About Dental Implants – Are They Right For Me?

Have you got at least one missing tooth and considering dental implants as a replacement option? If so, you’re probably wondering how they work, are they worth it and whether you are a suitable candidate for them? The truth about dental implants is that while they are one of the best options available for replacing teeth, several factors could mean that they’re not the best choice. Let’s take a look.


What are dental implants, and how do they work?

Dental Implants are titanium metal posts surgically inserted into the jawbone. These posts serve as tooth roots to anchor artificial teeth into the jaw – a bit like tooth roots. A single dental implant can be used with a crown to replace a missing tooth, or several implants can together support a fixed bridge to replace multiple missing teeth.

Implants are an increasingly popular treatment, and with care, they can last for many years. They are secure and function, feel and look just like a natural tooth. However, in truth, the following circumstances could be problematic for having implants placed. 



Poor Oral Health

For the dental implant procedure to be effective, you must have excellent oral health. So, the dentist will scrutinise your mouth, and if you have any signs of active gum disease or tooth decay, these will need to be addressed before dental implant surgery can go ahead. Furthermore, you must have sufficient healthy bone in the jaw to support the dental implants. 

The truth about dental implants is they are a strong, reliable tooth replacement option because once placed into the healthy bone, new cells generated by the bone fuse the implant firmly in place. However, this can only happen when you have good oral health and no evidence of gum or periodontal disease that could compromise the dental implant and the structures in your mouth that support it. 


What happens if you have bone loss?

Truthfully, all is not lost if you have bone loss in your jaw. A bone graft is a common procedure performed in dentistry that can help build up the bone to have sufficient density to retain a dental implant. 


Medical Conditions

As well as good oral health, you must also be in good general health to have a dental implant. Some medical conditions may make it more difficult if you are considering dental implants—although it doesn’t necessarily rule out the procedure entirely. 



If you’re living with diabetes, you should be aware of how diabetes can affect your dental implants. While implants are not affected by diabetes per se, the condition causes many other complications that can interfere with the successful placement of an implant and its ongoing health. 

The truth is that diabetes can slow down healing and may cause chronic infections—which will be a significant problem after dental implant placement. Keeping the area infection-free is crucial to retaining the implant long-term. 

Furthermore, diabetes can affect saliva production, leading to a dry mouth. As saliva plays a role in clearing away harmful bacteria in the mouth, anything detrimental to this process can increase bacteria and gum disease. Thus, it’s vital that anyone with diabetes keeps a close eye on their overall health and regularly visits their doctor and dentist. 



Osteoporosis affects bone density, and women after menopause are particularly prone to it following a reduction of oestrogen, essential for bone health. The jawbone may not be healthy enough for a dental implant, although a bone grafting procedure may be able to rectify this. 


Heart disease

A healthy heart is essential for pumping blood around the body efficiently. Blood contains vital nutrients, and if you have heart disease, this may impede the process and could potentially have repercussions for your body’s healing after dental implant surgery. 


Autoimmune diseases

An autoimmune disease is a group of medical conditions in which the body’s immune system, which usually protects us against foreign intruders like bacteria and viruses, attacks healthy body tissue and even biocompatible materials, such as titanium – the most common material for dental implants. The result could be implant rejection. 



dental implants facts and information st marysWe’re all aware of how much smoking affects our health, but it has particular repercussions for oral health. The toxins from cigarette smoking are drawn straight into the oral cavity and affect blood flow to the gums, which exacerbates gum disease and may contribute to peri-implantitis, a disease similar to gum disease that affects dental implants.

By impeding blood flow, smoking means that essential nutrients needed to fight infection and grow healthy tissue are diminished, which could have a detrimental effect following dental implant surgery.

The truth about dental implants is they are more likely to fail sooner in smokers. For this reason, many dentists now turn away smokers unless they are prepared to quit smoking for good. 


The Truth About Dental implants – The Takeaway

Dental implants are a great option for missing teeth, and while they are suitable for many people, you’ll need a thorough examination from a dentist to confirm your eligibility. Find out more about dental implants and dispel the myths by booking an appointment with us today.

Call us now on (02) 9158 6312.


Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner. 




Colgate – Bone Resorption: Why It Happens And What To Do Next?

Mayo Clinic -Dry mouth

CDC How is smoking related to gum disease?,your%20risk%20for%20gum%20disease.&text=The%20longer%20you%20smoke%2C%20the%20greater%20your%20risk%20for%20gum%20disease.&text=Treatments%20for%20gum%20disease%20may,well%20for%20people%20who%20smoke




What Is a Root Canal Procedure? It’s Not As Bad As You Think

What Is a Root Canal Procedure? It’s Not As Bad As You Think

When asked the question “what is a root canal?” most people can’t answer. And yet, the thought of a root canal procedure instils fear into many. Root canal therapy is nothing to be afraid of and, in reality, is no worse than getting a tooth filled. So let’s get into it!


What is a root canal procedure exactly?

Otherwise known as endodontic therapy, a root canal procedure, involves the removal of infected or diseased pulp and nerves that may be causing significant discomfort. During the process, the inside of the tooth is cleaned, disinfected, and finally sealed. Root canal therapy is, in fact, a common dental treatment carried out by most dentists and is used to repair and save teeth that may otherwise need to be removed.


Why Do I Need Root Canal Treatment?

There are several reasons for a root canal procedure, including tooth decay, repeated dental procedures, cracks or chips, and trauma. Contrary to popular belief, a root canal treatment is not painful. Instead, it gets you out of pain. 



To understand why you need root canal therapy, it helps to understand the tooth’s anatomy. A tooth is not hard all the way through. In fact, the middle of the tooth is hollow and is known as the pulp chamber. The chamber contains the tooth pulp, which, in turn, houses the inner workings of the tooth – the nerves, connective tissue, and blood vessels.

If there has been severe decay or damage to the outer layers of the tooth, the pulp tissue may be exposed and it becomes susceptible to bacterial penetration and infection—which can result in pain and swelling in the gums around the tooth. Once this happens, it is necessary to remove the pulp tissue with root canal treatment to prevent further infection.

Fortunately, most of the pulp tissue is essential to the development of the tooth and is not vitally important to the tooth’s health and function once the tooth has emerged. It can safely be removed to protect the shell of the tooth so that normal biting and chewing functions are preserved.


Signs of Pulp Tissue Infection

Some people don’t have any symptoms, but most people experience mild or severe symptoms ranging from mild sensitivity to severe pain.

If the infection is not treated, it can cause pain, swelling, and other problems. The condition can also lead to an abscess, affecting neighbouring teeth. Some of the signs and symptoms that you may need a root canal include:

  • Severe pain while chewing or biting
  • Boils on the gum line that may ooze blood or pus
  • A cracked or chipped tooth
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold food or beverages that linger, even after the stimulus has been removed
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Darkening of the gums or deep decay.


So, What Happens During The Root Canal Procedure?

The procedure is typically performed under a local anaesthetic, although the dentist may use conscious sedation if you are particularly anxious about the treatment. 

To gain access to the pulp chamber, the dentist creates an opening in the top of the tooth and uses a variety of instruments to extract the infected tissue from the chamber and root canals in each tooth root. Once all the debris is removed, the inside of the tooth is cleaned thoroughly. 

Antibiotic medication may be placed in the chamber before it is sealed with a temporary filling. This is to prevent bacteria re-entering and ensure that no infection is still present within the tooth.

You will return to the dentist a week or so later, and if there are no signs of infection, the temporary filling is removed and replaced with a permanent filling


What is a Root Canal Crown?

If a large amount of decay has been removed from the tooth during the root canal, it may be weakened and require a dental crown to strengthen it. A crown is a tooth-coloured restoration that fits over the tooth and is made from hard-wearing materials, such as porcelain or metal.


Benefits of Root Canal Treatment


  • Saves Your Tooth

If the pulp tissue in your tooth is infected, it will need to be removed. It’s the only way to save your tooth, but if you decide you don’t want the procedure, the only other option left is to have it extracted. 


  • No Ugly Gaps

If you can save your tooth with a root canal, you won’t have to worry about any gaps in your dentition. Not only will this be an excellent cosmetic result, but you won’t have to find a suitable tooth replacement option. So, root canal therapy could also save you money. 

therapy treatment root canal st marys


  • It’s Virtually Painless

For anyone who is experiencing pain or discomfort, a root canal procedure will alleviate any raging infection inside their tooth. Modern anaesthesia and techniques ensure you experience minimal discomfort throughout the process.


What is a Root Canal? – Conclusion

To summarise, root canal treatment may seem scary, but it is a safe and easy procedure with today’s technological advances. You can feel confident knowing that your dentist will not only provide you with the best outcome to alleviate any discomfort but will also ensure that your tooth remains fully functional.

Moreover, you won’t have to worry about replacing a missing tooth.



If you’d like to find out more, get in touch with us on (02) 9158 6312 and arrange an appointment with one of our team. Pearl Dental Care is committed to providing exceptional dental care in a personalised and gentle way.





Dental Board of Australia: