Cost Of Dental Implants12 Nov, 2015
Cost Of Dental Implants
So you need a dental implant and your dentist has told you all the advantages of how dental implants are the best solution for replacing a missing or damaged tooth. You go over all the benefits and advantages of dental implants, how long the treatment takes and finally the overall costs of the dental implant treatment!
The cost of dental implants can vary from dentist to dentist but it is important to understand some differences between implant prices. The costs can vary greatly and it is important to understand the basics of what an implant is and what you are paying for.
What is a dental implant!
Right first of all lets make this real simple. We are going to describe a simple scenario of having just one single tooth missing like an upper front tooth missing. To add to the simplicity lets consider that you have had this tooth missing for at least one year and simply have a gap in the area. ( ie no tooth present )
In order to replace the tooth you will need an implant, an abutment (optional) and a crown. The complete cost of this in the UK will start from 995 for dental clinics in the UK.
However the price does vary as the treatment available for such a scenario can vary greatly from one clinic to the other.
Why does the cost of dental implants vary between clinics?
Some clinics will offer premium implant brands which are more expensive than other implant brands. Price does not always equate to quality and the type of implant used will not usually affect the success overall of an implant. In other words a poorly skilled surgeon placing 'expensive' implants will not be saved by better implants.
Is there sufficient bone for implant placement. Before carrying out dental implant surgery it is very important to make sure that there is enough volume for an implant to fit properly in the area where a tooth is needed. A CT scan will allow the surgeon to measure accurately the exact height, width and thickness of bone available for an implant to be placed safely. If there is insufficient bone, a grafting procedure may be required. This will add to the overall cost of the treatment.
Is an abutment going to be used. Some dentists prefer always to use an abutment in order to make the connection between the implant and the crown above the gum tissue. An abutment in principle will allow for simpler impression taking and in cases of some implant designs will lead to less bone loss. It is sometimes possible to attach an abutment at the time of surgery and this will prevent bone loss in the appointments that follow as the abutment will not be removed and replaced more times than is necessary. Some dentists may prefer to use no abutment at all. This can be due to cost savings however this is not always the best solution as it can lead to bone loss around the head of the implant.
Type of abutment. There are different types of materials. Pre-fabricated abutments can be purchased in different heights and widths and tend to be cheaper than customised abutments. The material of abutment also plays a role in abutment costs. For example there are some materials like Zirconia which are used for certain cases where aesthetics is particularly important like anterior teeth. Zirconia abutments tend to be more costly than titanium abutments.
Will a provisional crown be made? It is recommended that a provisional or temporary crown be made before the final crown is finalised. The provisonal crown will allow the dentist, technician and patient to see the effect of how the new implant crown is going to look like. The provisional crown will also help the surrounding gum tissues to grow around the provisional crown and form a neat shape around the crown that resembles a natural tooth contour. Provisional crowns will provide a better end result!
Material of final implant crown. Again the material of the final crown will affect the cost. The most affordable type of crown which can be used on a dental implant is a porcelain bonded to metal crown. This type of crown has been used for many years and is generally strong and hard wearing. Zirconia crowns are more expensive and can provide a better aesthetic result than porcelain fused to metal crowns since they contain no metal. Zirconia crowns are metal free and extremely biocompatible with the tissues.
Practice overheads. Some dental clinics will charge more as they are located in different geographic areas for example overheads in central london are more expensive than Inverness?
Conclusion on dental implants cost.
We can see that the prices of implants vary greatly. It is very important that you obtain a detailed treatment plan from your dentist and find out exactly what is being included in your dental implant treatment plan. Ask questions of what treatment is being offered and always consider getting a second opinion.
Dr Bruno Silva works exclusively with dental implants at the Brighton Implant Clinic. The group has three branches in Brighton, Hove and Hailsham.