One of the most common questions surrounding dental implant surgery is “how much does it cost?”. We at Brighton Implant Clinic get asked this quite a lot, but it is always hard to give a solid figure.
Chances are if you’re reading this that you are considering dental implant treatment and have the same question. Every dental implant treatment will be different and personalised for each patient. And this means that prices will differ. But while comparing the cost between each clinic is still necessary, it shouldn’t be your biggest concern.
While we would agree that our treatments are still affordable, they’re not exactly cheap either. However, there may be more factors that contribute to the cost of a dental implant than you think.
In this article, we will be addressing some of the main factors that alter how the cost of your treatment is actually calculated, and also give an explanation behind the expense.
The implants themselves
Before we delve into the different contributors to the cost of treatment, we need to address what a dental implant is. Dental implants are small screws that are surgically inserted into the jaw bone to replace missing teeth. Therefore, you would certainly want it to be made out of sturdy and biocompatible materials.
The most common material used for dental implants is titanium, which is one of the sturdiest metals and also highly biocompatible. Titanium has been a material used in dental implants for many years and has an extensive history of success.
However, zirconia is another material widely used as a composition for dental implants. And while this is a more newly introduced material than titanium, they each have a very high level of toughness and biocompatibility. Both are very beneficial, but may still be quite different in terms of cost depending on the provider.
A lot of dentists favour more reputable brands of dental implant systems. It could take a matter of years to master a specific type of implant brand. Consequently, many are reluctant to change different brands or different products merely for the sake of costs.
Beyond materials, dental implants can also come in many different shapes and sizes, covering a broader range of purposes. Depending on the type of treatment you need and your medical circumstances, your dentist will be able to choose the correct type of implant for you. Each type of implant, of course, will differ in cost as well.
The type of restoration
The ways that the cost of your treatment can be changed go further than the choice of implants. You will also need to take into account the type of restoration (artificial teeth) you need.
For example, if you need individual teeth replaced, then the best option would be a crown. However, we also provide dental bridges for those with a small group of missing teeth, or an overdenture for a full row of missing teeth.
While we use titanium implants, our crowns and bridges are made exclusively with zirconia. It works brilliantly as a material for replacement teeth thanks to its biocompatibility and appearance. The white colouration also means dentists can create a highly accurate replica of the missing natural teeth.
Another advantage of zirconia is that it is almost completely impermeable. This means that plaque won’t be able to stick to its surface and it can be easily cleaned, as opposed to acrylic or composite metals, which are more permeable.
With the varying types of restoration that are on offer, there are also varying degrees of cost. You may also be able to find porcelain-coated metal crowns, which could cost more or less depending on the laboratory and the skill of the dentist.
The type of restoration, along with the implant, are the two factors that are most likely to determine the total cost of your treatment.
Knowledge and experience
When receiving dental implant treatment, you would surely want somebody who is qualified and has a lot of experience. But as you may know, this doesn’t happen overnight.
Dentistry is a medical field which is extremely technical. Dentists spend many years training and furthering their knowledge of dentistry and dental surgery. Along with this, a lot of money is also spent on this kind of education.
Dentists aren’t able to simply start placing implants without having the know-how first. They would have to invest in numerous ongoing courses. These courses might cost your dentist thousands of pounds, but they are essential to sharpen and update their knowledge, which will ultimately benefit you as a patient.
Beyond gaining experience through degrees or courses, dentists may have to educate others, attend conventions, or experience other dentists execute this treatment. While these ways of learning are less costly, dentists will need to spend time away from the clinic to do this. This means that some earnings will be lost.
Despite not being as much of an obvious cost factor as the implants or restorations, it still needs considering. Dentists need the confidence of their patients, which is why gaining experience is so essential. Consequently, they cannot spend money on educating themselves without earning money first.
The cost of running a clinic
As well as gaining the necessary experience, dentists will also spend a lot of money on the clinic itself. When running a clinic, there are several things a dentist needs to invest in. This includes renting and maintaining the building, insurance, staff and compliances.
At Brighton Implant Clinic, we have a large team of dentists, dental nurses, dental technicians, receptionists and more. Our staff are spread across four separate clinics, all based in Sussex. So you could imagine that investing in so many many staff members and multiple clinics can be quite costly.
Furthermore, dentists also have the ongoing costs that allow the clinic to run. It’s important to understand that a dental clinic is still a business. The rents, bills and utilities are essential for any business to operate, and the same applies here.
Compliance is also essential when running a clinic. The rules and regulations involved are put in place to make sure that treatments are carried out safely and correctly. Dentists will have to comply with these regulations.
We want our patients to have a comfortable and friendly experience from start to finish, which is why we fully invest in our clinics and our staff.
It is vital for a dental clinic to have the right equipment. Dental implant surgery requires a lot of precision and accuracy. Not even a 1-millimetre gap out of place is unacceptable in the field of dentistry. This is why all dentists need the help of several pieces of equipment to help further the predictability and accuracy of each surgery.
Firstly, CT scanners are incredibly useful as they can print off CT scans (that look similar to X-rays) of each patients mouth and jaw bone. This will let the dentist know whether your jawbone will be able to hold implants, and also help to determine the outcome of the surgery. The cost of CT scan units can start from around £50,000 to buy and will cost additional money to service and maintain.
If a dental clinic, like us, has a dental laboratory, they would also need a milling machine or 3D printer to create crowns or bridges. These devices could cost around £50,000 to £70,000.
Additionally, the cost of dental chairs, dental instruments, and other pieces of equipment will also need consideration.
Dentists want to invest in this much equipment to make treatment more predictable and more streamlined to deliver better results. This kind of technology is highly technical, and the developers of these machines have conducted years of research to make sure the final product is as precise as possible. But to be super-precise also means that each piece of equipment is another very costly factor that contributes to the cost of your surgery.
Your well-being as a patient
Lastly, but definitely not least, the most essential factor that will affect the cost of your treatment is making sure your treatment is as perfect as possible. As mentioned earlier, your treatment will be specially tailored to meet your needs.
All of the above factors, including implants, restorations, experience, clinic costs and equipment, are investments made by dentists to give you the best results.
When browsing the cost of treatments that dentists provide, keep in mind that your funding all of the above factors, each of which is invested in to give you that perfect smile.
The cost of the treatment is not the only thing you’d need to consider. Take into account the clinic specifically and their reputation, and how local the clinic is to where you live.
In conclusion, you should also view dental implant treatment as a worthwhile investment. Implants and restorations are designed to last many years, and they will help you hundreds of times a day. But most importantly, they will drastically improve your confidence and quality of life.
If you still want to know more about the cost of your treatment, you can view our price list here. However, please note that these prices will most likely be different from what you see.
At Brighton Implant Clinic, we provide several dental implant treatments and cosmetic restorations. Our principal dentist, Dr Bruno Silva, has been placing dental implants since 2003 and opened the first clinic in 2009. Our staff promise to provide you with first-class dentistry and only the best in patient care. Contact our team to schedule a consultation today.