How Much Do Implant Retained Dentures Cost?
Implant-retained dentures are a type of dental prosthesis that can be used to replace missing teeth or an entire row of teeth. The treatment involves surgically implanting titanium posts into the patient’s jawbone. The dental implants serve as the root structure of the lost teeth and ball-shaped metal abutments are attached above the gumline. A partial or full denture is then placed onto the abutment to restore the patient’s appearance and functionality.
While a great alternative to traditional removable dentures, implant-retained dentures tend to be a costlier restoration option. The typical costs associated with implant-retained dentures will be discussed in this article along with some of the factors that influence cost to the patient.
Implant-Retained Denture Cost
The overall cost for implant-retained dentures is influenced by several factors including the number and type of dental implants used, the quality of the denture, the doctor performing the procedure, geographic location where the procedure is performed, and any required procedures (such as a gum graft) prior to surgery.
Every patient’s individual needs differ, so there is no “set” cost for the procedure. Generally, replacing a single tooth with a dental implant can cost around $4,000. As such, replacing an entire row of teeth with implant-retained dentures can easily cost $30,000 or more. With such a wide range in price, further examination of the factors that influence cost is warranted.
Factors That Influence Implant-Retained Denture Cost
- Type of Dental Implant Used: The two basic types of dental implants are traditional and mini. Costing between $1,500-$2,500 per implant, traditional implants are wider than mini implants and therefore offer a higher level of stability needed for more significant restorations. Because sufficient bone density is required for traditional implants, patients lacking the needed density are not candidates for traditional implants. For these patients, mini implants may be a suitable alternative. At $500-$1,500 each, mini implants are less costly than traditional implants but because they do not provide the same level of support, generally require eventual replacement.
- Number of Dental Implants Needed: The more implants needed to support the denture, the higher the cost. A full denture typically requires six to eight implants however some dentists offer a procedure known as “All-on-4” that uses four dental implants. Partial dentures can be supported with fewer implants.
- Pre-Surgery/Preparatory Procedures: Pre-existing oral health issues like tooth decay or gum disease, may require treatment prior to proceeding with dental implants. Patients with insufficient jawbone density, may require bone grafts to support the dental implants. Costs for these procedures are typically in addition to those of the implant retained denture treatment and in the case of a bone graft, could add another $2,500 to the overall treatment cost.
- Quality of the Denture: Low quality dentures start around $300 but are inferior in the level of stability, appearance, or comfort offered by higher quality counterparts that can cost up to $5,000.
- Choice and Location of Doctor: The dentist’s reputation, experience, and location also affect cost. A more experienced doctor may cost more upfront but their expertise could reduce the likelihood of failure and costly replacement. Similarly, a small-town doctor will likely charge less than a big-city practitioner because their overhead is lower.
- Insurance Coverage: Implant-retained dentures are often considered a cosmetic procedure rather than a medical necessity by insurance companies. As such, patients should carefully check their dental insurance coverage prior to undergoing treatment to determine what is covered.