Dental Implants Pros and Cons List

Losing teeth is not an uncommon problem. Accidents, disease, failed procedures, and decay can all lead to tooth loss. The older we get, the more likely we are to lose teeth. Dental implants are one way to combat this loss without having to be fitted with dentures or bridges. Dental implants are becoming increasingly more popular. There are several reasons for this, but there are also several drawbacks to the procedure.

List of Pros of Dental Implants

1. Independent
Dental implants have a titanium framework that is embedded into the gums, making it completely independent. Bridges and partials, by contrast, require surrounding teeth to provide support. By keeping the implant independent, there is no chance of neighboring teeth being damaged by the replacement tooth. If the next tooth does become diseased and needs to be replaced, the implant is not affected.

2. Natural Looking
A dental implant does a much better job of replicating a natural tooth than bridges or dentures do. People report no difficulty speaking or chewing with their implant. There is also no clicking noise that is often associated with dentures. Particularly for people who have lost just a few teeth in an accident, getting implants that match the rest of their teeth and look natural is very important.

3. No Extra Maintenance
Dental implants do not require special cleaning and never need to be extracted. Diligent oral hygiene and regular dentist visits keep them functioning in top form, just like your natural teeth. There is no need to take them out for cleaning or to buy a special cleaner for them. The toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss that you use on your natural teeth will work just as well for your implants.

List of Cons of Dental Implants

1. Infection
Getting fitted with dental implants is a very safe operation. There is, however, a risk of infection, as there is with any procedure. It is very important that the implant site be kept clean until it is fully healed. The implant itself is not susceptible to decay, but the surrounding gum tissue can still suffer from periodontitis. This can lead to bone decay in the jaw line, which may loosen the dental implant.

2. Slow Process
You will not walk into your dentist office with a missing tooth and come out with a new implant. Being fitted for implants is a slow process. There are many steps involved. The process does not end with the procedure either. It may take up to six months for your new implant to fuse with your jawbone. You may have to wear a temporary tooth over your implant during this time in order to hold it in place. If your implant moves out of place during this time, it may have to be reset.

3. Cost
Dental implants are very expensive. Because they are generally considered to be a cosmetic procedure, most insurance policies do not cover them. A single implant can cost several thousand dollars and most or all of that money will have to come out of your own pocket.