Potential Problems with Dental Implant Candidacy
Although, rare there are times when dental implants complications occur. If you have lost a single tooth or several teeth, you have firsthand experience with the self-esteem issues and reduced quality of life associated with adult tooth loss. In fact, since you’ve found our blog, you have probably spent some time researching your tooth replacement options. As you’ve likely already learned, dental implants offer the very best solution for replacing missing teeth. Made of biocompatible titanium screws that are surgically inserted into the jaw, dental implants can secure crowns, bridges, and even full dentures in place. However, not every person who has a few teeth missing qualifies for dental implant placement. Dr. David Zelby, an Atlanta dentist and dental implant specialist, discusses complications that could impact your candidacy for this innovative tooth replacement solution.
The Problem: Compromised Bone Density
A number of disorders ranging from osteoporosis, arthritis, and advanced periodontitis can weaken the density of the jaw bone. In addition, people who have had missing teeth for several years often have compromised bone density around the site of the missing tooth. Without a strong, healthy jaw bone to support the implant, most dentists will not consider placing implants.
Solution: If you have compromised jaw bone around the site where you need a tooth replacement, a skilled maxillofacial surgeon can perform a bone graft. Using your own natural bone cells or synthetically-derived cells, a bone graft encourages bone growth and can strengthen your jaw enough to support a dental implant.
The Problem: Gum Disease or Periodontitis
Gum disease poses an interesting quandary. Very often, people who have lost teeth to advanced gum disease seek out dental implants as a tooth replacement solution. However, dental implants can still have problems with developing the signature inflammation associated with gum disease.
Solution: Dr. Zelby believes that a patient should bring the health of their teeth and gums up to the most optimal level possible before proceeding with dental implant placement. In most cases this will entail deep cleaning, including scaling and root planing, and antibiotic treatment. In many cases, your dentist will also want you to demonstrate a commitment to maintaining a consistent at-home oral hygiene routine.
The Problem: Tobacco Use
Most implant dentists and oral surgeons will not place dental implants in patients who regularly chew or smoke tobacco products. In general, smokers and chewers have poor healing ability and reduced blood flow, leading to a greatly increased chance of dental implant failure.
Solution: While the solution is simple – quit smoking or chewing tobacco – actually quitting can prove a major challenge. Choosing a program that helps you modify the behaviors that prompt your desire for a cigarette, like the SmokeFree.gov program sponsored by the National Cancer Institute, can offer the support you need. Once you’ve quit, your body will very quickly recover its optimal healthy function and your dentist can reconsider dental implant placement.
Dental Implants with Your Atlanta Dentist
To learn whether you qualify for dental implants, call Dr. David Zelby at (770) 955-0550. Dr. Zelby and the expert team at Aesthetic & Implant Dentistry of Atlanta provide a wide range of restorative and cosmetic dentistry services to help you achieve the best smile of your life. Our Atlanta dentist office proudly serves patients in Marietta, Smyrna, East Cobb, Buckhead, Vinings, and Metro Atlanta.