How to Tell if You’re a Good Candidate for Dental Implants

Are you missing one or more teeth and looking for a long-term replacement to restore your smile? Dental implants may be the right treatment for..
Absolute Smiles Bassendean

Are you missing one or more teeth and looking for a long-term replacement to restore your smile? Dental implants may be the right treatment for you! Dental implants are an effective, durable option for tooth replacement. However, not everyone is a good candidate for this procedure – that is why it’s important to consult with a dental professional who will assess your case to determine if dental implants are right for you.

In this blog post, we will discuss what makes someone an ideal candidate for dental implants so you can make an educated decision about replacing your missing teeth.

  • An ideal candidate for dental implants must have good health, enough jawbone mass, healthy gums, doesn’t smoke and is compliant.

  • Dental implants are indicated for patients at least 18 years old and above.

  • A patient’s oral health is one of the major factors that affect one’s eligibility for dental implants.

  • Patients with severe bone loss may still be considered for dental implants if they undergo regenerative procedures like bone grafting and sinus lift.

  • Patients who grind their teeth may be considered for dental implants. However, they must have their bruxism managed, and a mouthguard must also be worn for protection.

  • Individuals with a history of radiation therapy to the head and neck are evaluated thoroughly before consideration of dental implant treatment.

  • Patients who smoke and drink alcohol may experience slow healing, increasing the risk of infection and implant failure. Because of this, they are advised to stop smoking and drinking before and after implant placement.

  • Individuals with medical conditions, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, have impaired healing. A dentist evaluation and doctor’s advice are necessary to determine if a dental implant can be successfully placed in these cases.
Absolute Smiles Bassendean

What Are the Criteria of a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?

When considering dental implant treatment, it is important to determine whether or not you make a good candidate for the procedure. The criteria for a good candidate for dental implants are key to a successful treatment plan and achieving satisfactory results from your dental implant procedure. Good candidates for dental implants must meet the following:

  • Good health condition:
    An ideal candidate must have good health, with no medical conditions, like diabetes or heart conditions, that can impede healing or slow the recovery process.

  • Enough jawbone mass:
    A healthy jawbone is necessary to provide a strong foundation for the titanium post to attach to securely. Otherwise, bone grafts may be necessary to help regenerate the lost bone.

  • Healthy gums:
    Healthy gum tissues reduce the risk of infection. This increases the chance of a successful implant procedure.

  • Doesn’t smoke:
    Nicotine can narrow the blood vessels, making it difficult for the blood to flow. This impedes healing since adequate blood supply cannot reach the surgical area where it is needed. Because of this, patients who smoke are advised to quit smoking when having dental implant treatment.

  • Patient compliance:
    Practising good oral hygiene contributes to the success of the surgery. Also, regular dental visits will help the dentist monitor your treatment and detect problems early.

Are There Age Restrictions for Dental Implant Candidates?

Dental implants are becoming more popular among patients because of their high success rate. However, there are age restrictions for dental implants. Younger patients are advised to wait until 18 years old to receive dental implant treatment. By this time, their jawbone has sufficiently grown, and most of their teeth have erupted.

As for adults, no age restriction is in place. Instead, sufficient bone density and the state of their general health are evaluated to determine if the patient is suitable for dental implants.

Does a Person's Overall Oral Health Affect Their Candidacy for Dental Implants?

When it comes to the dental implant procedure, a person’s overall dental health plays an important role. A candidate for implants must practice good oral care and be free from dental diseases like gum disease and tooth decay.

Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is the inflammation of the gums that can lead to bone loss. If not addressed, it can lead to the loss of the bone supporting the implant and, eventually, implant failure. Patients who wish to have dental implants but have active gum disease must undergo gum treatment to manage their condition before having dental implants.

Dental implants are resistant to tooth decay. However, patients with tooth decay are still advised to have their teeth addressed because the bacteria causing tooth decay may also cause infection in the surgical site. Decayed teeth must be restored or extracted before implant treatment.

Good oral health is the pillar of any successful dental treatment. Patients must maintain good oral hygiene to qualify for dental implant treatment. This will help ensure a longer lifespan of their restoration. Failure to maintain good oral hygiene may initiate dental problems that could lead to implant failure.

Can Individuals With Significant Jawbone Loss Still Receive Dental Implants?

The jawbone’s role in dental implants is quite essential. It is the anchor to which the implant posts/screws are placed. Historically, individuals with significant jawbone loss have been deemed ineligible for dental implants due to their lack of adequate bone. However, advances in science have offered a viable solution for this criteria through new regenerative techniques like:

  • Bone grafting:
    This surgical procedure involves transplanting bone tissue from a healthy area of the jaw to the affected area to help stimulate new bone growth and achieve sufficient bone mass. By regenerating or increasing the volume of the bone, patients will have enough healthy, viable bone to support the implant post.

  • Sinus Lift:
    This surgical procedure adds new bone to the upper jaw. It aims to increase bone mass near the sinuses so dental implants can be securely placed without compromising surrounding tissue. The procedure involves raising the sinus membrane and filling the space with donor bone material to increase the bone height.

While these may seem like invasive procedures, the result includes improved appearance and increased stability of dental implants. With the help of these procedures, patients who have suffered a significant bone loss may be eligible for dental implants.

Can Individuals With a History of Bruxism or Teeth Grinding Be Candidates for Dental Implants?

Individuals with a history of bruxism can still be candidates for dental implants. However, the efficacy of the implants will be significantly impacted if the condition is not managed appropriately. To ensure that the implant will be stable and absorb bite forces correctly, bruxism must be addressed prior to considering dental implants. This can include making sure any existing conditions have been managed adequately and offering protection to both the natural teeth and implant using a custom mouthguard. Taking these steps will ensure dental implants are successful and long-lasting.

Are Individuals With a History of Radiation Therapy to the Head or Neck Still Eligible for Dental Implants?

It is important that individuals with a history of radiation therapy to the head and neck be evaluated thoroughly before consideration of dental implant treatment. Radiation therapy can potentially compromise the blood supply to the jaw, increasing the risk of tissue death. To prevent any future complications, it is essential for patients who have had radiation therapy to their head or neck to get an appropriate assessment before undergoing dental implant treatment.

During the assessment, the dentist will conduct a thorough evaluation to determine if a patient is a viable candidate for dental implant treatment. This assessment includes careful examination of the radiation-affected area and imaging tests such as X-rays, CT scans, and 3D imaging technology. These tests help measure bone density to determine the possible position of the dental implant and any possible complications that could arise due to the pre-existing condition. While the risk factors are higher than those without prior radiation therapy, these individuals can receive dental implants, given that both patient and practitioner take adequate precautions.

Are Individuals With a History of Smoking or Alcohol Use Still Eligible for Dental Implants?

While individuals with a history of smoking or alcohol use are not automatically ineligible for dental implant treatment, they must be aware of the increased risks associated with the healing process. Since smoking and alcohol impede the healing process, patients will increase their odds of success by abstaining from these habits leading up to and immediately following their treatment. Special care must also be taken during the recovery period to ensure full health of the implant site, which means adhering to all aftercare instructions given by the doctor. Ultimately, it is better for the patient’s health if they refrain from habits like cigarette smoking and drinking strong alcoholic beverages both before and after their procedure.

Can Individuals With Medical Conditions Be Candidates for Dental Implants?

People with medical conditions must undergo thorough evaluation before considering dental implants. Since dental implants require oral surgery, patients must generally be healthy prior to treatment. Some medical conditions can greatly affect the success of dental implants.

Uncontrolled diabetes can slow healing and hinder the integration of dental implants into the jawbone. It can also increase the risk of infection. These may lead to implant failure.

Patients with cardiovascular conditions have reduced blood supply to their tissues. This can also lead to poor healing and slow osseointegration of implants.

While these medical conditions significantly affect the healing process of implants, they do not contraindicate dental implants. Patients with these conditions may receive treatment for as long as they are controlled.

Final Thoughts

Dental implants are excellent replacements for missing teeth. However, not all patients can receive dental implant treatment. Certain criteria must be met to be eligible for this treatment to ensure its success.

If you’re looking into dental implants, visit Absolute Smiles Bassendean. Our dental team has years of experience in dental implant treatment, and they can help you determine if dental implants suit you.

Find out if dental implants are a good fit for your dental needs by scheduling a consultation with us. We will focus on providing you with teeth that look natural and secure to improve the quality of your smile. Find out right now how much of a difference dental implants can make for you with Absolute Smiles Bassendean.