A price guide for best value dental implants

Implantologist and dentist Dr. Andreas Jahnigen helps you choose the best price-quality dental implants in this detailed interview.
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If you are considering getting dental implants for replacing missing teeth, this ultimate cost guide is just right for you! 

What is the average cost of dental implants?

A Single Implant system starts at 2560€ for implant; implant abutment and crown (all inclusive).

A single Immediate loading implant starts at 2800€.

There can be some added costs. The main two are:

Bone reconstruction: begins at 450€. A Full upper-jaw bone reconstruction involves a lot of material that can raise the cost to 2000€ per jaw.

Sinus lift: 1500€ per sinus (major sinus lift).

Are there different quality standards? How do they affect the pricing?

Products such as the Straumann components are more expensive. For example, a high end- Straumann Single Implant can cost 3000€ (all inclusive) for implant, implant abutment and crown.

Some added costs are:

Immediate loading- 400€ (requires a temporary crown)
Surgical guide- 400€
Bone reconstruction starts with 450€ (eg. Bovine Bone + Membrane)
Sinus lifts – 1500€ per sinus (major sinus lift)

A full mouth reconstruction is priced per jaw and the cost is always subject to the level of bone reconstruction and soft tissue reconstruction required.

The average range would be as follows: a total upper jaw with 8 immediate loading implants: 24000€ per jaw including a temporary bridge which will be exchanged after integration to CAD/CAM abutments and final restoration.

A high end reconstuction on the other hand (a total upper jaw with 8 immediate loading implants) could be as high as 27000€ including a temporary bridge which will be exchanged after integration to CAD/CAM abutments and final restoration

What if the patient has no teeth for example in the upper jaw, how many implants would you recommend?

There are treatment scenarios where an implantologist would advise the patient one implant per tooth (Eg. 14 implants in the upper jaw).

Personally, I would advise the patient to have less implants. We do find that it is better for the implant if you allow a lot of space between them. If the implants are placed too close we typically find problems because of cleaning issues as bacteria can get into the niches between the implants.

For a whole upper jaw there are several treatment plans. One option is called All-on-4 and was originally designed by NobelBiocare. In this procedure, a bridge is connected on top of the All-on-4 implant system.

One problem that can arise is if an infection occurs around one of the implants, the rest then would be compromised because you will not have enough support for the bridge.

As a patient, how do you know what dental implants are ‘good value’ for money?

First of all you want to ensure that the dentist uses original components. There are a lot of look-alikes out there on the market. For example, there are many dentists who use Straumann look-alikes that cost a fraction of the price. As a patient, you have the right to have all the components and bone reconstruction materials laid out to you beforehand.

I would ask the dentist to write down exactly what implant system and or bone reconstruction material he is using. I would then go home and research these materials.

In my opinion, Geistlich (bone reconstruction material) and Straumann (implants) products are of the highest quality. Botiss (bone reconstruction material) are equally excellent in quality. They are all, very good value for money.

The high-end market companies include Nobel Biocare, Staumann, Dentsply (the largest company on the market) and 3i. From the patients point of view it is highly recommended to use products from the leading companies, as they will be staging and offering their services on a long-term basis. If the patient would need a replacement in 20 or 30 years such as abutments or replacements, they will be available.

The smaller or start-up companies may be much cheaper (these companies can come and go), but the patient has no guarantee of replacing dental components if needed in the future. You are paying for the security that you get when you stay with the big companies. They do the research.

Ask your dentist of an exact breakdown of components that he plans to use and be sure to research them.

Another consideration to look out for: if your dentist uses a 3D surgical guide, this does not require paying 1000€.  I personally add a 10% to the cost of the laboratory fees because I see this as a service to the patient. It helps me. The same applies to bone reconstruction material, which I do not necessarily justify charging extra high amounts for.

Is there a “Ferrari” option for dental implants in terms of cost and quality?

The concept of Ferrari is a completely different concept. In this case one is mimicking nature, so to speak. This is not something that can take 6 months but can take up to 2 years.

The Ferrari option for the aesthetic zone, for a single implant involves a lot of preparation work. It involves: assessment of the tissues; bone; a CT scan; temporary crowns, impressions and placement of the implant with a 3 dimensional guide and simutaneaus bone reconstruction including soft tissue augmentation.Once the implants are placed, the patient waits for approximately a 4-6 month integration period.

It also involves a  stage 2 soft tissue manipulation. This is another smaller procedure of surgery where the dentist can increase the thickness of the soft tissue. This requires another 2-3 month period so that the soft tissue can mature.

Once the tissue has matured, the patient goes back in to have the provisional temporary crowns placed. The best option for this is a screw retained crown, which means that you can take it off at any time you like. The dentist is then able to increase the width of the thickness of the temporary crown to put pressure on the soft tissue.

You kind of sculpt the soft tissue, you manipulate it, you push it in the right area where you want it, you add new composite to it and you review the patient 2-3, 4-5 times, whatever it takes.You take it out and put it back together in the way you want so that you can shape the soft tissue, then let it mature to stabilize.

At the very end of the process, you make the final impression in order to do he final restoration work. This requires more appointments in order to review and to do what is necessary to make a perfect match for an implant crown. These crowns are made with zirconium oxide abutments. Aesthetically, their colour can mimic the pre-existing root.

With the Ferrari there are no short cuts. This also includes the best labs and the best components. It takes time to sculpt the gumes. It is like gardening. It is very much like a bonsai tree. You have to force the gum into the shape that you need and this takes time.

One thing, from the perspective of the patient, once they have the temporary Crown, life is good. This can be done after 6 months. Ferrari is about soft tissue management. It‘s about creating the best possible papilla.
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