One of the first questions that patients looking to replace missing teeth with dental implants ask is, “How much do dental implants cost?”. The inevitable answer is, “It depends”. This isn’t because the person answering the phone is trying to brush off the question; it’s because it really does depend. Here are some factors that can ultimately determine the cost of the dental implant procedure.
- How many teeth need to be replaced – The more teeth that need replacing, the more expensive the procedure is going to be. This is not only because more implants are involved but also because planning the case takes more time, skill, and attention.
- Amount and quality of bone in the jaw – Some patients don’t have enough good quality bone at the site of the missing tooth and might need to undergo a grafting procedure to improve the tissue quality at the implant site. The time and resources spent on the bone grafting procedure need to be accounted for in the total price.
- The quality of the dental implants – Many dentists want the best for their patients so they use higher-end dental implant systems. These might cost more, but they can save time and money in the long run by reducing the chances of complications. If the cost of procedure seems high, it might be, in part, because of the high quality of the materials used.
- The location of the missing tooth – Some regions of the mouth are easier to treat than others, as some areas are more visible than others, requiring closer attention to esthetics.
- Training and skill of the dentist – Some dentists have extensive training in placing implants and are very well regarded in their field. As such, these dentists are in higher demand, thus resulting in a higher cost for higher quality work.
- Geography – Cost of living varies from place to place, so if a friend mentions getting dental implants for a low price in one city, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be able to find the same quality for that price in yours.
At the end of the day, you can’t count on ads that promise a certain price for implants or estimates given without knowledge of your personal situation. The best you can do is find a dentist that seems right for your needs, discuss the treatment plan, and then see if it makes sense for you.