A dental implant can be a fantastic restoration for missing teeth. The surgical placement of the implant is done in our office, often with a local anesthetic, as a minimally invasive procedure. One of the biggest requirements for candidacy is the ability to heal at a reasonable rate. There are some medical and personal causes that can decrease the rate of healing, and we will need to discuss these possibilities prior to treatment. At Ford Dental Group, we understand that the planning phase of restoring teeth is the most crucial part of the treatment process, working together, we can help make it successful.
We rely on your body’s natural ability to heal to make a dental implant successful. A threaded implant is placed into the jawbone. The science at work here is known as osseointegration. The process involves taking advantage of your body’s own ability to continue growing bone material and placing a device that is biocompatible. We expect the bone to grow up and around the device fusing the two firmly together. Sometimes, patients may not be good candidates due to some hindrance in healing.
What Can Prevent My Candidacy For Dental Implants?
To be a candidate for dental implant surgery, we need the patient to be able to reasonably heal. You may be surprised to learn that age is not one of the factors to prevent candidacy. Dental implant surgery is often approved for older and even medically fragile patients because it is minimally invasive. As long as the patient is able to heal timely, they can be a candidate for surgery.
Situations that can limit healing include:
- Medical Conditions: There are certain medical conditions that can slow the healing process. This can include patients with uncontrolled diabetes, patients receiving cancer treatment, and more. Please discuss all medical conditions with us even if it seems irrelevant to your oral health. Some medical conditions may delay the surgical implantation of dental implants, and some may require discussions with your physician.
- Medications: Prescribed, over-the-counter, or non-prescribed medications can impact your natural ability to heal. We need to be aware of any and all medications you are taking, no matter if they are being ingested, injected, or even rubbed on. If a medication has properties that can impact healing, we may discuss alternatives with the patient or even request permission to talk to their personal physician.
- Smoking: Smoking tobacco, marijuana, or vaping can slow the healing process. The heat and carcinogens will adjust processes in your mouth. This includes reducing the saliva in your mouth, increasing the likelihood of infection, or temporary paralysis of the tissue in your mouth. Smoking does not eliminate you as a candidate, but we may discuss an amount of time before and after surgery that we may ask you to abstain.
None of the above situations necessarily eliminate candidacy, but it may delay candidacy. We are happy to review each patient individually and discuss treatment options in more detail knowing your specific needs. In some situations, we may request more information from your physician and discuss alternatives to medication or treatment.
For more information on candidacy for dental implant surgery, contact our Huntington Beach office at (714) 409-6161. We offer a variety of tooth replacement options like dentures. Visit our site to learn more about the benefits of dental implants and aftercare and instructions.