Are You A Suitable Candidate For Dental Implants?

Teeth replacement options for our Tunbridge Wells patients.

Dental implant placement has grown rapidly in recent years and is now recognised as one of the best methods for replacing a missing tooth.

The success rate is very high, and well-maintained implants can last for around twenty years or more, making this one-off procedure a worthwhile investment for most patients. Not everyone is a suitable candidate though, and we investigate some of the reasons for this in today’s blog.

Children

Children are not suitable for dental implants, at least until their facial features are fully formed. Whilst an implant placed into a child’s jawbone would probably heal quite quickly, the development of their face would create problems with the implant and we therefore do not place implants for children. If you are in your late teens and have considered implants, we will be pleased to see you at The Calverley Dental Practice to discuss your suitability or otherwise. Once growing has ceased, there is every chance we can proceed.

Smokers and regular drinkers

If you smoke, this does not necessarily prevent you from having dental implants. It does, however, increase a number of risk factors. If you are not prepared to at least stop smoking for a period of time either side of the procedure, which could be several weeks, then an alternative tooth replacement option such as dentures may be better for you. If you cease smoking until the implants are fully healed, but then start smoking again, your implants will not immediately fail, but periodontitis and peri-implantitis are much more likely. These conditions may lead to eventual failure of your implant and hence why we recommend ceasing smoking, both for the sake of your oral and general health.

Bone loss

If your tooth, or teeth, have been missing for some time, you will likely have lost some bone mass in that area of the jaw. Because a dental implant needs healthy bone in order to be successful, it will be necessary to take scans and x-rays to determine the quantity and quality of bone structure before we are able to proceed. Should there be insufficient bone available, all is not lost, and bone grafts or sinus lifts can be employed to enable the procedure to go ahead. This will lengthen the treatment period and require an additional procedure, but is an effective way of enabling implant placements where insufficient bone is available.

Although the initial procedure to place dental implants is more complex and time consuming than, for example, dentures; the vast majority of patients who have this treatment at our Tunbridge Wells practice have noted how pleased they are with it. This long lasting and natural tooth replacement treatment is as near to a natural tooth as can be achieved at this point in time.

If you would like to find out if you are a suitable candidate for dental implants, please call The Calverley Dental Practice on 01892 543898 to arrange your initial consultation.