When people begin to investigate the possible options for replacing their missing teeth, they quickly realize that dental implants are far and away the best solution. An implant restores the look and very nearly the full function of a missing tooth. It’s almost like replacing a real tooth with another real tooth. No other restoration method even comes close to providing the same result.
Once it is clear that an implant is the way to go, the process shifts from aesthetics to economics for most people. The pertinent question, of course, being, “How much do dental implants cost?”
The simple answer is more than other methods of tooth replacement (which include crowns and bridges, partials and full dentures). The reason is because those techniques don’t work anywhere near as well as implants. These days, replacing a missing tooth is a basic case of you get what you pay for.
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If you opt for a traditional crown and bridge, you are accepting its limitations in strength and durability. You may have to give up some of the foods you enjoy because they are too hard and can break your dental work. Even taking this precaution, you will likely need to have your bridge remade in five to seven years. Inside of a decade, you will have spent more money than the cost of an implant with years of repair expenses still ahead of you.
Partials and dentures are an even larger issue, since they replace multiple or all teeth. These appliances offer very little in the way of stability (they are only held in place by adhesive paste after all). They seem to have a knack for slipping at the most inopportune times — while you are speaking with friends, laughing at a joke or sneezing, for instance. And here again, your bite strength is extremely compromised so you will almost certainly have to give up some foods you enjoy.
Perhaps worst of all, both of these methods allow the jaw bone to deteriorate. It is the loss of bone that causes the sunken appearance seen in many people with missing teeth. The constant pressure from the roots of natural teeth keep the bone dense and strong. With bridges, partials and dentures, the restorative work is all above the gum line. The jaw bone receives no stimulation so it deteriorates. This causes your skin and facial muscles to sag from the loss of foundation.
Dental implants, which are basically tiny titanium screws secured in the jaw bone, perform the functions of the missing roots and prevent bone loss. Significantly, dental implants are the only tooth-replacement option with this critical benefit.[/read]
When it comes to specific pricing, asking “how much does a dental implant cost” is a bit like asking “how much does a new car cost.” In the latter case, for example, is the car in question a Ford or a Ferrari? The details make a world of difference. With implants there are numerous factors that must be accounted for to get a definitive price. That being said, we understand that for planning purposes even a ballpark figure is helpful. Here are the basic costs for getting a single dental implant at Harrell Dental Implant Center.
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3D Cone Beam CT scan – $138. A 3-dimensional scan is extremely important for safe and painless placement of an implant. The image confirms that you have enough bone to hold the implant (or reveals the need for grafting) and shows the exact placement of the nerve so it can be avoided. This step is necessary for every consultation and implant procedure.
Surgical guide – $525. Using the 3D scan, a surgical guide is created to take all the guesswork out of placing your implant. The guide is laid over your teeth and gums and precisely regulates the installation depth and angle of your implant. A guide is used for more than 80 percent of implant procedures in our office.
Implant – $1800-2200. The implant is the actual titanium screw that is anchored in your jaw to secure your new artificial tooth. The cost varies based on the size and location of the the implant placed.
Abutment and Crown – $1800-2400. The abutment is the attachment point between the implant and the porcelain crown, which is your new tooth. For front teeth, due to the angulation of the implant placed in the bone, we utilize a custom fabricated titanium or zirconium abutment, with a separate crown made to attach to the abutment.
For most back teeth, bicuspids and molars, the abutment and crown are integrated into one piece to form what is called a “screw retained” crown.
Total cost – $3700-5300. This should be considered an “all-in” price for a single dental implant, including the visit, the dentist’s costs, etc. Therefore, when comparing costs with another practice make sure their price also covers the same items. Many times you will find that a lower-priced implant doesn’t include the costs of all the items in the advertised total. On the other hand, some parts of the procedure may be left out completely by the low-cost leaders to offer you a rock bottom price. The trade-off is your confidence that you are receiving the best care possible.
Possible add-on costs: For some patients there could be additional costs to receive an implant. If the 3D scan shows that a bone graft is necessary to make an implant possible, this expense would be separate from the above price.
Bone graft – $524. Includes the use of graft material and membrane used to help the graft stay in place, plus sutures or stitches to secure the graft and membrane.
Similarly, if the implanted tooth is in the front of the mouth, a patient may opt to have a flipper made to wear for the three months that the implant is healing before the crown can be attached. This would also be an added expense.
Flipper – $450-600 (based on how many teeth are replaced). This temporary removable prosthetic appliance can replace one or multiple teeth while your implants are healing.
All-on-4 implant – $26,000-30,000. This is the “all-in” price for replacing an entire arch of teeth (upper OR lower) with an All-on-4 implant appliance.
We will gladly file your dental insurance on your behalf. Whether we are in-network or out-of-network for your provider, you will receive your full benefit. Typically, however, the benefit limit is between $1000-1,500, so even at the maximum there will be out-of-pocket expenses. You should check with your provider for a full explanation of your coverage.
If you need help covering the remainder or any portion of the cost, financing is available.
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CareCredit: If you choose 6, 12, 18 or 24 months of payments, no interest is charged when you make the minimum monthly payments and pay the full amount due by the end of the promotional period. More details about CareCredit can be found at www.carecredit.com/dentistry.
Lending Club: Schedule treatment without delay and fit the cost into your monthly budget with a responsible payment plan offered through Lending Club Patient Solutions. No-interest plans for 6 or 12 months, extended plans with low monthly payments, no upfront payment, no payment due for 3-7 weeks.
We know this because the great majority of our patients have shopped around before deciding to go with us. We can tell you straight up that we are not the cheapest implant practice in the market — but then that’s not our goal. We want to be the best implant practice in the Charlotte metro area. And that’s what we are.
Schedule a free implant consultation to discuss your situation with Harrell Dental Implant Center today so we can help you decide the best implant treatment for your needs.