It is a wonderful thing to know that, if you lose teeth they can be replaced with implants. For many people, this just means one or two teeth, maybe a few at the most. For others who have lost or will lose all of their teeth, it means all of them will need to be replaced with implants. This is great news if you can afford it. Insurance does not cover implants.
Since dental implants are still considered a cosmetic thing and not a medical or dental need, insurance denies any claims for them and specifically refuses to cover them. This is mostly because of the cost. A full head of implanted teeth can cost up to $75 thousand and very few people are up for that bill. However, if you need it and can afford it, it is a better option than dentures.
As you will find in journals like the journal of clinical dentistry, there is also a new method and type of implant that is more affordable. It is intended for people who have lost all of their teeth or will lose all of them. Instead of having individual implants for each tooth, all teeth on fixed dentures are implanted on four posts on the top and the bottom.
This is known as “all-on-four implants” and it is about a fourth of the cost of a full set of regular dental implants. They can be made to be permanent or just to fix dentures for periods of time between cleanings. That is, the implants can be permanent or removable, depending on the situation.
Either way, it is an excellent middle of the way solution for those who do not want dentures and cannot afford full implants. If this seems like something you might need, ask your dentist about it on your next appointment.