A Look At The Cost of Dental Implants
If you’ve ever hired a building contractor for a home improvement project, you know that when it comes to building work on your home, you get what you pay for. Very few people would feel comfortable taking the lowest quote for a project that does not have any room for error.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that the budget handyman, is a master craftsman who dramatically undervalues himself. However, more likely than not, if that quote seems too good to be true, it probably is, and you’re going to discover sooner or late that corners are being cut.
Choosing a Dentist for a Dental Implant Procedure
When it comes to choosing a dentist to perform your dental implant procedure, it’s no different to choosing a contractor. Moreover, just as it is when selecting a building contractor, identifying the right dentist to perform your dental implant surgery is worth an additional investment up front, if it means avoiding expensive and potentially painful problems further down the road.
That’s not to say that choosing a dentist should be based purely on the dental implant cost. But it is necessary to understand what makes up a quote.
Here are three questions to ask when it comes to choosing an implant dentist, and these are three factors that can make all the difference in the outcome of your treatment.
Question #1: Does The Dentist Have The Right Education?
You can be certain that any implant dentist in Australia has gone through medical school to study dentistry. They have passed their exams and are qualified for routine, general dentistry.
However, what most people might not understand is that the post-graduate education for performing advanced dental procedures can vary greatly. Even for procedures with a surgical component, such as performing dental implants.
There are essentially two ways to become trained to perform the dental implant procedure. Plus, depending on which type of training the dentist received, will affect the treatment experience, as well as the comfort and longevity of the dental implants.
The two types of training are:
- A short course that often runs over several days. These are usually aimed at general dentists who are looking to add additional dental services to their practice.
- A longer term postgraduate course. These include an intensive course of clinical, theoretical and practical education. Which means they gain a wide range of first-hand experience. These courses are typically aimed at dentists who wish to focus exclusively on implant dentistry.
While both types of courses will qualify a dentist to perform the procedure, the nature of the shortened courses means they tend to focus only on the basic techniques. And then what is often left out of the shorter course is something called “Treatment Planning.”
Why Treatment Planning Is Essential To Implant Dentistry
Treatment Planning is an essential part of implant dentistry and can have a big impact on dental implant cost.
You see, treatment planning is where the dentist evaluates all of the factors that could impact the procedure. Including how to manage or minimise complications, based on the individual’s circumstances.
It’s a significant part of the training in the post-graduate courses, but because there are so many factors that could impact the dental implant procedure, treatment planning is not covered in the short form courses.
A treatment plan will minimise the risk of complications, make sure the procedure is as comfortable as possible, and ensure the implant doesn’t cause chronic discomfort or pain. It’s also going to make sure the dental implant lasts so that it will not need to be redone at a later time.
Treatment planning isn’t just for people with complicated treatment needs. Even a single tooth replacement can have a complication. If patients have a facial conformation, it will make having a comprehensive treatment plan even more necessary.
For example, some people have deep sinus cavities and a narrow bone structure. That can leave a small path for safely inserting the implant. This type of anatomical formation means particular attention and planning should go into avoiding nerve damage, which can cause chronic sinus problems.
This kind of thing is not likely to be known ahead of time, which is why it’s essential that the dentist completes a treatment plan prior to the procedure.
The broad variation of training and education that dentists receive is one of the main factors in the range of price quotes you will often when comparing dental implant cost.
Question #2: Is The Dentist Using The Right Implant Materials?
Another major factor when choosing the right dentist for the implant procedure is the materials that are used. If you’re focused on the dental implant cost, two of the questions you should ask dentists is who manufactures their implants and dental crowns and where are they from.
You might have heard about questionable implant materials that are produced in some overseas countries. Unfortunately, some of the materials from overseas countries do not match Australian standards.
If the quality of the materials were all the same, dentists would not be tempted to take advantage of the cost savings that are made from overseas implant materials. But the truth is, there’s no such thing as “budget” dental implants. There are just excellent quality implant materials, and there’s gambling.
We have seen increasing reports of imported implants being susceptible to implant failure, fracture, and maintenance problems.
Indeed, the competence of the dentist plays a significant role in the success of the implant. But even the best implant dentist cannot make up for an implant failure.
Consequences of a Dental Implant Failure
When an implant becomes loose, the movement can cause a fracture of the implant itself or cause bone loss surrounding the implant. This can be painful if it’s not discovered quickly. If an implant fails or becomes loose, the gums can recede and the dark grey metal of the implant will be visible around the gum. The implant must be surgically removed and will require a replacement implant, ultimately doubling the cost of your initial procedure.
The implants themselves aren’t the only thing to ask about: Similar due diligence should go into finding out who produces the dental crown or bridge.
Low-cost providers and overseas laboratories may use inferior materials, which can lead to discoloration and complications with the size and fit. This can also impact both comfort and the stability of the implant over time. It’s best that you find out beforehand that the same consumer safety regulations that we expect here in Australia are in place to avoid a costly and potentially painful problem later on.
Questions #3: What is The Range of Experience of the Dentist?
When comparing dental implant cost, you want to find if the dentist has had the experience of lots of implant treatment cases.
Remember the importance of treatment planning? Experience is just as valuable (if not more so) as education when it comes to identifying the right treatment plan and being able to execute it accurately.
With that in mind, who do you think has more experience in planning dental implant treatments? The General Dentist, who also offers implants to the occasional patient in their practice, or the Implant Dentist who spends hours each day fitting dental implants, and performs hundreds of implant procedures each year?
The answer is, of course, the Implant Dentist who performs hundreds of procedures each year. Moreover, these are the dentists who invest heavily in their education and training to become true experts in implant dentistry. And because they see many more patients throughout the year, the experiences they gain across a wide spectrum of implant cases is even more valuable than their education.
When someone has a complicated implant procedure, the implant dentist has thousands of past patient experiences to draw upon. Whereas the General Dentist, who only does the occasional implant case, doesn’t have anywhere near the same level of experience to fall back on. Nor the same level of training in treatment planning. And as we already stated, dental implant cases that are performed without a treatment plan are more likely to encounter complications.
With an implant dentist expert, you can feel confident that they’ve got the range of experience to do the job right. They understand the importance of using quality materials and have the technical skills to back it up.
So while the implant dentist might seem slightly more expensive than the general dentist at first glance. It’s these factors that give your implant procedure the best chance of being done right the first time.
A Final Word About Evaluating Dental Implant Cost
When you chose a dentist for your dental implant procedure, as long as you understand what the best questions are to ask, and you can feel at ease with the answers, then you can be sure that you are minimising the risks, while ensuring your investment will pay off.
- You want to be sure you find an Dental Implant Expert. As they have developed the knowledge to plan the treatment properly and execute a plan to minimise risks and complications.
- You want to check that the dentist is using high-quality materials that will stand the test of time.
- You should ask them whether they have the experience to select the highest quality materials, and install them properly.
- And you want to know that you’re getting quality work, that you’ll only pay for once.</span
If you follow the suggestions above, you can be confident of finding the right dentist to perform your implant surgery, and avoiding painful problems.
Are You Ready To Make The Next Step?
If you are interested in having dental implants, you can book a free dental implant assessment at our practice in Bexley. Just call us on (02) 9567 4151 to schedule your free implant assessment.
At Bexley Dental, our principal dentist, Dr. Theo Spyrakis, has traveled the world, studying with Implant Dentistry’s most respected clinicians, including Professor Paolo Malo, of the famouse Malo Clinic in Portugal, the founder of the All-On-4 technique.
Dr. Spyrakis is recognised as one of the more experienced dental implant and All on 4 dentists in Sydney. He performs over 500 implant cases each year. This experience in implant dentistry has given him the first-hand knowledge of how to minimise risks, and how to execute the procedure to the highest standards.
Dental Implants aren’t just a side service for Dr Spyrakis, they are a dental discipline that he has devoted his career to. And this is why Dr Spyrakis is often approached by patients to fix failed implant dentistry.
To book your free dental implant assessment at Bexley Dental, just call us on
(02) 9567 4151 to schedule your free implant assessment.