When Are Dental Implants Not An Option

Patients who want to replace missing or loose teeth often opt to get dental implants.  These implants are placed into the patient’s own jawbone and the gums are allowed to heal around the implants.  Then, a crown or artificial tooth is placed on top of the dental implants. Patients are left with a strong and sturdy replacement to their natural teeth that can last for many years with proper care. But, dental implants are not the best alternative for everyone.  To have implants placed, a patient must go through oral surgery. So, the patient must be in good physical health. They must also have adequate bone in the jaw to support the implants. If they have suffered from chronic illnesses like diabetes or leukemia, they may not be a good candidate for dental implant surgery.  Finally, if the patient smokes, they may not be an ideal candidate to receive dental implants.  

Patients Must Have a Good Oral Hygiene Routine

To be considered for dental implant surgery, the most important thing the patient can have is an excellent oral hygiene routine.  This means regular brushing and flossing, and relatively healthy gums free of disease. It also means that the patient has committed to regular dentist check ups for teeth cleaning and exams.  Because after getting dental implants placed, the patient will have to continue with the good oral hygiene. Dental implants should be treated as natural teeth.  

No Tobacco Products

If the patient uses tobacco it can lead to less than desired results.  First, tobacco products stain the enamel of natural teeth, so it stands to reason that they will also stain your new, artificial teeth as well.  And, using tobacco products can slow the healing process after dental implant surgery, which is not ideal. Basically, to be a good candidate for dental implants, the patient should be a non smoker.  

Bone Loss

If you want to have successful dental implants placed, there needs to be enough bone for the implants to integrate with, or they may fail.  And unfortunately, bone loss can occur with the loss of your natural teeth. Bone loss is caused by the loss of a tooth, gum disease, cavities, and injury to a tooth or gums.  In rare cases bone loss occurs from a developmental defect. To determine if you have suffered from bone loss, your dentist may take some x rays or give the patient a bone density test.  In some cases if bone loss occurred, new bone can be grown, but you will have to have a procedure for that, and that is in addition to the three stages of dental implant surgery.  

Chronic Diseases and Illnesses

If you have suffered from diabetes or leukemia you may not be an ideal candidate for dental implants.  Or, if you have had radiation to the head or neck. These illnesses can slow down the healing process after dental implant surgery.  Your dentist can evaluate each individual patient and decide on a case to case basis.  

Comments are closed.