Are You a Good Candidate for Dental Implants? Omaha, NE
May 5, 2019
Dental implants are a very successful solution and have been used in a wide variety of different patients over the years. However, this doesn’t automatically make everyone a suitable candidate. Any reputable dental implant provider will perform a thorough assessment of your teeth and oral health to determine whether they are the best solution for your individual requirements. This will include:
A physical assessment of the condition of your teeth
If you require any additional dental work on any part of your mouths, such as a cavity filling, bridge repair or root canal, this should be carried out before your dental implant surgery. You also need to be completely committed to taking proper care of your teeth by brushing and flossing them at home. This is because periodontal disease is the biggest threat to the longevity of a dental implant and periodontal disease is a common occurrence in people who don’t take the time to brush and floss properly.
Assessment of your jaw bone
Dental implants rely on a process called osseointegration. This is where the bone in your jaw heals around the titanium post implanted into it, securing the post permanently in place. If osseointegration doesn’t occur, the dental implant will fail. By assessing your jaw bone using x-rays and CT scans, it will be possible to see if you have enough healthy bone in your jaw to regenerate around the dental implant post and make the procedure a success.
Your medical historyAs with any sort of dental surgery, there is a small element of risk involved. A reputable and experienced dental implant provider will want to make sure that the benefits of the procedure far outweigh the risks and since certain lifestyle choices can increase the likelihood of complications, you can expect to have a conversation with your implant provider about your medical history and current habits that could affect the outcome of the procedure. This will include:
- Whether you are on any medications at the present time
- If you have been diagnosed with specific health problems, such as diabetes
- If you are pregnant, trying to conceive or currently breastfeeding
- If you smoke or consume excessive amounts of alcohol
What Can I Do if I’m Found Not to be a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?
The most common reason for someone to be told that they aren’t a good candidate for dental implants is because the assessment process has found that they don’t have enough healthy bone in their jaw to support an implant post. This is extremely common amongst patients who have had a gap in their smile for some time, or who have been using a tooth replacement solution such as a bridge or denture. This is because when you no longer have an active root supporting a tooth, the underlying bone naturally begins to deteriorate.
However, if this is the reason you have been given for failing dental implant candidacy, all is not lost. You may be suitable for a procedure known as bone grafting. This is where some of your natural bone is taken from another part of your body, or an artificial bone substance is grafted onto the deteriorated part of your jaw bone. Doing this triggers the underlying bone to regenerate, strengthening it and making it supportive enough for a dental implant to be placed. It typically takes up to six months for a bone graft to generate enough healthy bone for implants to be possible. If the graft is successful, you will be then able to undergo the dental implant procedure.
If you would like to learn more about what it takes to be a good candidate for dental implants, please don’t hesitate to contact our experienced dentistry team at Armburst Dental in Omaha, NE (402) 778-0218.