We often say that dental implants can last a lifetime, but do we really mean it? Yes. The truth is that dental implants last for decades and that no one has established the actual lifetime for dental implants. Studies confirm more that dental implants regularly last 20 or 30 years or more. Some people have even had dental implants for 50 years! If you take care of your dental implants, it is quite likely that they will last you the rest of your life.

Do you want to talk to us about the longevity potential of your dental implants in Sydney? Please call (02) 9686 7375 today for an appointment with an implant dentist at My Hills Dentist in Baulkham Hills, NSW.

Studies Show Dental Implants Last a Long Time

The following chart is a summary of some of the studies on long-term dental implant survival.
 

Survival Rate Study Length Number of Implants Authors Date
91% 20 Years 69 Lekholm U, Gröndahl K, Jemt T 2006
99% 20 Years 123[1] Astrand P, et al. 2008
89.5% 20 Years 95 Chappuis V, et al 2013
93.3% 20 Years[2] 12,737 Krebs M, et al. 2015
100% 30 Years 28 Turkyilmaz I, Tözüm TF 2015

[1] The population originally had many more implants, but 19 of the original 48 patients died before the final follow-up. Data reflects only the surviving patients.
[2] Although the study is 20 years long, the survival rate is calculated on the basis of 17 years.

 
As you can see, most of the studies show a very high survival rate for dental implants 20 years and beyond. The main limitation is that these studies are individually very small. But the fact that they all agree, and that they are confirmed by the large Krebs study makes us believe that this is likely representative of the dental implant experience.

Anecdotal Evidence Shows Even Longer Lifetimes

Although there are no studies that go longer than 30 years, we do have stories of people whose implants have lasted even longer.

The first dental implant recipient, who got his implant in 1965. He received four dental implants in his lower jaw, and they remained in place, functional, and healthy for over 40 years before his death. The second-ever dental implant patient received his dental implants the following year, and he still has all six of them.

No Defined Lifetime

We can’t talk definitely about the “lifetime” of dental implants because it hasn’t yet been defined. When talking about products, lifetime has a very specific meaning. Products typically experience two periods where failure is most likely. Many products experience an initial wearing in period where they are more likely to fail. Then they have a long period where failures are relatively rare. We see this with dental implants: about half of all failures occur in the first year, but after this, failures become very uncommon.

Then, at some point, failures become common again. This is when products are reaching the end of their lifetime. The actual lifetime is usually defined as when 50% or more of a product is expected to fail.

Obviously, when you look at the scientific studies of dental implants, we are nowhere near finding that point. It’s quite likely that the actual lifetime of dental implants is so long that we won’t be able to define it until lifespans are much longer than they are today.

If you want to start your lifetime with dental implants in Sydney, please call (02) 9686 7375 today for an appointment with an implant dentist at My Hills Dentist in Baulkham Hills, NSW.