Dental implants are artificial replacements for the root portion of our natural teeth. They are generally used to support the crown or the bridge area of the teeth. They are anchored into a pre drilled socket, in our jaw bone to secure a denture firmly in place.
There are many reasons to replace missing teeth, they are:
- Having a set of full teeth will definitely make you feel more confident. You will not have to worry about the fact that people, would mock or make fun of missing teeth.
- When teeth start missing, then the part of the jaw bone, that held those teeth, start to dissolve. Implants help in preserving the jaw bone and help in maintaining the shape of the jaw.
- Loss of teeth directly affects the kind of food you can chew, and how well you can chew. Few people, who have missing teeth, develop poor nutrition which in turn affects their overall health. Raw fruits and vegetables require chewing and people with missing teeth tend to avoid them.
- Loss of teeth could affect a person`s speech. T, in turn, would lower his self-esteem.
Dental implants can be classified into three types:
- Single stage implants
- Two stage implants
- Immediate implant
Single stage implants: In this the entire process, right from the removal of the tooth to the placement of the implant and fabrication of the crown, all are done in a single stage. The entire process requires around two weeks.
Two stage implants: The first stage involves removal of the teeth and placement of dental implants. The patient would have to wait for an interval of three months. The second stage would involve the fabrication of crowns. This is generally used in cases where single stage implants are not possible.
Immediate implants: This is a revolutionary concept that combines skilled surgery with specialized dental implants for immediate results. This technique involves the placement of dental implants and crowns in a single day.
Dental implants are a long-lasting solution for replacing missing teeth. Unfortunately, the cost of dental implants can be hard in the pocket. However, there are a few ways in which one can obtain affordable dental implants, such as:
In order to get the best deal, the patient should consult several dentists. He should ask for a detailed report of the fees structure, and estimated cost of the necessary consultations. He should note down the total cost of the different procedures such as anesthesia, modeling, surgery, bone grafts, sinus lifts and the materials required.
The cost of dental implants can vary according to the geographical location. Patients can save a considerable amount by choosing a larger geographic area. Dentists in urban cities have a higher cost of living and hence are likely to quote a higher price for the implants.
Dental tourism has become quite common, as there are a lot of patients searching for affordable dental implants. One can find low-cost options in developing countries, such as Costa Rica, Mexico, Hungary, and other Asian countries.
While the patient may make an impressive amount of savings, dental tourism should be approached with caution. The regulation and licensing standards of the country should be carefully researched. The prospective dentist`s reputation and history should be checked before going ahead.
Schools of Dentistry
Patients can take part in a dental program, in a school of dentistry. Recently graduated dentistry students generally perform the dental implants in these schools. This is performed under the supervision of dental surgeons and experienced dentists. However, they generally choose people with low-income status. One may have to go for multiple visits, the hours may be too long and there may be a waiting period too. However, the dental procedure is of a good quality, as the diagnosis and treatment, is analyzed by many students and professionals.
Dental societies and charitable organizations
For low-income patients, dental societies and low-profit organizations offer free or affordable dental implants. Patients belonging to a certain demographic group (handicapped patients, victims of domestic violence, women, and children) may be provided free care by some associations.
There are many finance companies that cover patient’s implants procedure and allow them to make monthly payments along with the added fees and interest. These are dental financing companies.
Discounted dental plans
There are different dental membership plans, in which patients pay yearly or monthly fees, in order to receive affordable dental implants and discounts ranging from ten to sixty percent.
Know the alternatives
There are a few alternatives to dental implants, such as bridges and partial dentures. Dental bridges do not last as long as dental implants. They can last for about fifteen years.
Most dental insurance companies do not cover dental implants as they consider them to be a cosmetic procedure. However, some dental companies are introducing offers that are related to dental implants. Dental insurance usually covers procedures that restore functions that are compromised by the pain caused by missing teeth. Hence if dental implants are the only procedure that can cater to your oral health problem, then your insurance would surely cover at least a portion of the fees.