Who’s a candidate for dental implants?
If you are missing even a single tooth, you could be a candidate for dental implants. They are by far the best way to replace missing teeth. Of course, dental implants are not for everyone. Sometimes, people simply dislike the idea of having anything permanently anchored in their jaw. Very rarely, a medical condition like cancer or diabetes could make installing implants problematic.
Generally speaking, though, you are a good candidate for dental implants if you:
- Have enough bone density in your jaw to support dental implants
- Practice good oral hygiene
- Have healthy gums and teeth
- Are a non-smoker, or will commit to stopping during the implant procedure
Depending on how many teeth you have missing, and how long your mouth takes to heal, the entire process of having dental implants installed will be anywhere from four months to a year. If you are not willing to make this investment in time, then you are not a good candidate for dental implants.
Now, a word about bone density. As we have stated, a good candidate will have enough bone mass. This is because if you do not, the implant will not anchor strongly, and it could fail due to the force exerted on it by chewing and biting. However, even if you do not have sufficient bone mass, you could undergo bone grafting to improve your suitability as a candidate for dental implants. Bone grafting is a process of taking bone from another part of your body, and transplanting it into your jaw. In some cases, donor bone could also be used.
If you have gum disease, you will not be able to have dental implant surgery until the condition is brought under control. Fortunately, gum disease is treatable, and once your gums are in good shape, we can go ahead with the procedure.
Dental implants are the preferred means of replacing missing teeth for the simple reason that they feel and work exactly like your own teeth – no other treatment will do that for you. The only disadvantage to implants is that they are expensive, and not usually covered by dental insurers.
If you have missing teeth, and would like to find out if you are a good candidate for dental implants, call KC Smile at 913-491-6874. You can also request a consultation with Dr. Headley by filling out the form on our Contact Us page. We are located at 12850 Metcalfe Avenue, Suite 200, Overland Park, KS 66213, and look forward to serving you. To learn more about dental implants, read our dental implants overview and the benefits of dental implants.