Dental implants are the standard of care for tooth loss today, offering important advantages over other dental restoration options in terms of oral health and function, longevity, comfort and aesthetics. Fortunately, advances over the past decade or two in materials, technology and surgical techniques have made these advantages available to the vast majority of people who have suffered tooth loss. Unfortunately, as use of dental implants has become more widespread, so too has misinformation. In the interests of debunking bad information that may discourage patients from getting top-of-the-line dental care, here are five of the most common myths about dental implants.

Myth: Dental Implant Placement Is Extremely Painful

Reality: Dental implant placement is surgery, so there will be some pain and discomfort. However, most patients who undergo the procedure find it no more painful or uncomfortable than a simple tooth extraction. Additionally, oral surgeons take care to ensure patient comfort during these procedures, offering a range of anesthesia options to suit the needs and preferences of patients.

Myth: Dental Implants Are Often “Rejected” Or Just Fall Out

Reality: Dental implants are constructed of biocompatible materials, most frequently titanium, so “rejection” is not an issue. Implant failures, in which implants fail to bond with the jawbone, loosen or fall out, can happen in a very small percentage of patients. Dental implants, according to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, have an overall success rate of about 95 percent, and many oral surgeons have achieved success rates as high as 98 percent.

Myth: Dental Implants Are Very Expensive As Compared To Other Options

Reality: Dental implants do generally cost more initially than options like dentures or dental bridges. However, over the long-run, dental implants are frequently more cost-effective. The primary reason for that is the fact that implant-based dental restorations have greater longevity than dentures or bridges. The average lifespan of a dental implant is 25 years. Dental bridges need replacement periodically, with an average lifespan of seven to ten years. Dentures must be relined or replaced every five to ten years.

Myth: Dental Implants Are Easy, So Choosing A Cheap Provider Is Smart Shopping

Reality: Choosing the most skilled and experienced provider – an oral surgeon – who uses top-quality materials and equipment to perform your dental implant procedure is the best way to ensure optimal results. While offers from discount dental implant centers or dental tourism outfits may seem tempting, dental implants are one area in which you’re quite likely to get exactly what you pay for. Often, these discounts are made possible by cutting corners, such as using inexperienced staff, poor quality materials or outdated equipment, all of which can lead to substandard results and greater risk of complications.

Myth: Dental Implants Are Just For Young Patients With Perfect Health

Reality: While you can be too young for dental implants, since they aren’t a good option until jaw growth is complete, you can’t be too old. In fact, dental patients in their 90s have been successfully treated with dental implants. You don’t have to be in perfect health either. While conditions like active gum disease, bleeding disorders or uncontrolled diabetes or hypertension may pose a problem, most health issues, so long as they are treated and controlled, do not disqualify patients as dental implant candidates.

While this covers the most common myths about dental implants there are plenty of others out there. The best way to get accurate information based upon the particulars of your situation is to consult with an oral surgeon.

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