Since their invention, dental implants have unlocked great, new possibilities for many people who have lost their teeth. With a reputation for being the only permanent and longest-lasting tooth replacement method, dental implants have completely changed how complete, healthy smiles are restored.
While there are other restorations, such as dental bridges or dentures, only implants provide a complete tooth replacement system, from artificial roots to new dental crowns that look, feel, and work like your own teeth. They allow you to eat and talk normally, and smile with confidence, so you’ll never have to deal with feeling embarrassed or self-conscious.
Unfortunately, even with these well-established benefits, a lot of people are still discouraged from getting their missing teeth replaced with dental implants. There are a lot of myths surrounding implants, from their appearance to restrictions, and more. And it’s these myths that keep some people from restoring their smile.
Did your periodontist recommend dental implants to restore your smile? It’s time we quieted the noise brought on by various myths and misconceptions. Check out this myth busters guide to dental implants:
How do dental implants work? A quick refresher
Dental implants are made of titanium posts that are fused with your jawbone. They function as the artificial roots of missing teeth, but they are not exactly your replacement teeth.
Rather, your new teeth are anchored in place by the implants in your jawbone. These can be made of porcelain, resin, or ceramic. Getting your new teeth attached to the implant is the final step in restoring your smile.
Top Myths and Misconceptions About Dental Implants
1. Myth #1: Dental Implants are Expensive
Fact: Dental Implants are Much More Cost-Effective than Any Tooth Replacement Method
It’s true that dental implants cost more upfront than dentures and dental bridges. Since implants can cost thousands of dollars, this price point isn’t the most accessible to most people. However, since dental implants last longer, they’re actually more affordable in the long run, since they don’t come with repeat costs as with dentures and bridges:
- Replacing dental bridges every 5 to 15 years
- Adjusting or replacing dentures when they no longer fit (i.e., falling out when they’re loose)
- Maintenance costs, such as fixatives and adhesives.
2. Myth #2: Dental Implants Can Damage the Gums or Jaw
Fact: Dental Implants Help Preserve Your Jawbone and Facial Structure
A common misconception about dental implants is that they can damage the gums or the jaw, since these titanium posts are inserted in them. But it’s not true at all.
In fact, dental implants can do a lot to preserve your jawbone and maintain your facial appearance. They don’t damage the gums or jaw—they stabilize it since the bone can deteriorate after letting a missing tooth go untreated. Since they are implanted in the bone, they function like the roots of your teeth, effectively filling in the gaps.
Similarly, dental implants also help preserve remaining adjacent teeth. With an implant and dental crown in place, these prevent remaining teeth from drifting towards the gap. Meanwhile, bridges and partial dentures can weaken or loosen natural teeth since your teeth are used to support them.
3. Myth #3: Only Older People Can Get Dental Implants
Fact: Anyone Can Have Dental Implants
It’s common for people to lose teeth with age. That’s why another common misconception about dental implants is that only senior citizens can get them. But the fact is, tooth loss can happen at any age, whether due to decay, disease, or injuries. And as a result, anyone can get a dental implant.
Generally, dental implants are suitable for everyone. Your periodontist will look at the strength of your jawbone and whether you can receive a bone graft if it has deteriorated, as well as your dental and medical history to make sure that you are a good candidate.
4. Myth #4: The Dental Implant Surgery is Painful
Fact: Dental Implant Procedures can be a Lot Less Painful
As with any surgery, everyone’s most common fear about dental implants is experiencing pain. However, getting dental implants isn’t as painful as you might think.
For one, your periodontist will administer an anesthetic and sedative. During recovery, you will be given pain meds, as well as recommended soft foods to help with the discomfort. And finally, once you’ve recovered, dental implants will provide improved function and quality of life.
5. Myth #5: Dental Implants Look Fake and Unnatural
Fact: Dental Implants Support Teeth That Look, Feel, and Function Naturally
Anytime people think of “fake” or replacement teeth, they assume that it stands out unnaturally, which can make you feel self-conscious about your smile. But it’s not the case at all.
Since dental implants are placed in the jawbone, they can securely anchor high-quality dental crowns in place. These are made of ceramic, porcelain, or resin. Your new teeth will look and feel like your natural ones, with the same reliable function for eating and talking, and preserving the structure of your jawbone. Compared to dental bridges and dentures, implants appear more natural.
6. Myth #6: Dental Implants Last Only a Few Years
Fact: Dental Implants can Last for Decades
A lot of people are still skeptical of how long dental implants can last. Since other restorations such as bridges and dentures need to be replaced, it can be quite surprising that implants can last nearly twice as long, if not longer.
In fact, the average lifespan of dental implants is 25 years. And with proper oral hygiene and lifestyle habits, they can even last a lifetime. This is why they’re the most successful and cost-effective tooth replacement method, without decreasing in effectiveness over time.
7. Myth #7: Many Dental Implants are Rejected
Fact: Dental Implants are Rarely Rejected
When something is implanted in the body, it’s a common fear that it can be rejected when it’s not compatible. This is another common misconception about dental implants. And like all the others, it’s simply untrue.
The fact is, dental implants are rarely rejected—it doesn’t happen often. After the implants are placed, they take months to fuse with the rest of your jawbone, a process known as osseointegration. This fusion creates a strong foundation for replacement dental crowns. And on the rare occasion that the implant doesn’t fuse, your periodontist can remove it and try again in 3 months.
Learn More Facts About Dental Implants at Periodontal Associates
Now that you know the misconceptions about dental implants and the real facts, you’re ready to finally get your missing teeth replaced. At Periodontal Associates, our periodontists in Oakville are dedicated to dispelling the myths and misconceptions about this most effective tooth replacement method, so you can make a well-informed decision about restoring your smile.
During your consultation, you can ask our periodontists about the many things you’ve heard about dental implants, and get the facts straight. Learn more about our dental implant procedure and how we can improve your quality of life.
What misconceptions have you heard about dental implants? Check with our periodontists in Oakville. Get the right facts about dental implants when you book a consultation.