First, be careful about half-price advertising. If the implant is half-price, the dentist is probably cutting costs in the quality of what you are receiving. I think it’s Clark Howard that says “if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is.”
That being said, if you are trying to figure out the ins and outs of implants verses the older more conventional methods of tooth replacement, the cost of dental implants at first blush may appear high, and therefore, unaffordable to most people. But appearances can be deceiving if you examine the beneficial differences and the time involved by your specialist. After years of perfecting dental implants, we have the cost down to about what a 3 unit bridge costs, which really makes it quite affordable. While we have written on those issues before, let’s explore other aspects of price and how different dental implants may differ very significantly depending on different factors.
The real concern for the patient is ‘where and how’ to find a low cost quality dental implant, and is most likely the driven adjective ‘low cost’ a result of the perception by the patient that teeth are utilitarian to their daily life. That’s really not the case, but to put the cost into perspective, all the while considering that your teeth aren’t really as appreciated as much as they should be, let’s examine what goes into the cost of a dental implant.
4 Factors that Drive the Cost of Dental Implants:
The Material: The traditional materials – prices of cobalt-chromium alloy and titanium are not the same. Implants from cobalt-chromium (CC) alloy rods are cheaper than comparable titanium implants, but when it comes to zirconium dioxide, then cost of a dental implant may appear to be cost prohibitive to the patient. But, depending on where the implant is being placed, you may end up with a less than satisfactory result with the less expensive CC implant.
The Size: This case is a significant factor. The bigger the implant, the more material, the more it costs, but also the more it may do. Also, special coatings applied to the surface of the implant, contribute to better osseo-integration with the bone, will affect the cost of the dental implant.
The Manufacturer: Different manufacturers put different prices on similar rods made from the same material. Some manufacturers include some kind of an extra charge in the dental implant’s price for their brand name. This is a lot more esoteric and therefore harder to explain. It’s like trying to explain the difference between Polo and Hanes T-shirts.
Finally, it may depend on where your dentist gets his implants from. And this factor may be a function of how motivated your provider is in providing you with the best implant material for the least amount of cost to you. Some of that may just end up being economies of scale by your provider. Does your provider have contacts directly with manufactures in China or Israel, where the dental implant cost can be significantly reduced, while the indirect purchase of dental implants from U.S dental suppliers may ratchet up the price?
If the price is too good to be true?
The cost of an dental implant starts from around $1,500 up to $5,000.00, depending on the location and preparatory work necessary to place the implant . Anything less may be an indicator that you’re getting an inferior product or one not designed for a particular location in your mouth. Short term the implant device may appear to be fully functional. But if we look at the cost and the cost of other materials for dental implants compared to their operational life, the difference may be likened to the difference between Toyo’s and Michelin tires. Here again you may get what you pay for and the initial cost may appear affordable, but in the long term you are going to get a better result with respect to how it functions and how long it lasts if your provider installs Michelins.
A lot of your choice and cost may depend on the choice of your provider. It’s not to say the more you spend the better you will be. Rather, a reputable practitioner, who is truly trained in the placement and restoration (and this may be two providers), may be a significant factor in what you end up with and what it costs. Trust and reputation are the more difficult factors to define for the patient.
Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC
ZoAnna Scheinfeld, MS, DMD
Hanna Orland, DMD
3781 Chamblee Dunwoody Road
Chamblee, GA 30341
290 Carpenter Drive 200A
Atlanta, GA 30328