3 Changes You May Have To Make Before Getting A Dental Implant

Posted on: 1 February 2016

Your age, health, and habits are all important to a dentist when determining whether you are a good candidate for dental implants, and this is why he or she will ask you a lot of different questions relating to these things. For a dental implant to be successful, your jawbone must firmly attach to the implant through a process called osseointegration. Unfortunately, there are several things that can prevent this process from working properly. If you have certain habits or conditions that can cause a delay or problems with this process, you may need to make some changes in your life.

Stop Smoking

One quality that will make you a good candidate for dental implants is healthy gums. The problem is that smoking can weaken your gums, which can cause you to be at a higher risk of developing gum disease. In addition, smoking weakens your immune system and makes it harder for injuries and wounds to heal.

If you currently smoke, the dentist will thoroughly examine your mouth for signs of gum disease. If you have gum disease, you may need to get it treated before you can get implants. In addition, the dentist may ask you to stop smoking.

Getting a dental implant is a two-step process. The first step is installing the implant in your jawbone. After this is done, the dentist will insert the crown on the implant, but this cannot be completed until the osseointegration process if fully complete. Smoking after getting the implant will delay this process and could increase your risks for dental implant failure.

Stop Drinking Alcoholic Beverages

Drinking a few alcoholic beverages now and then will not affect your ability to get a successful dental implant, but heavy drinking may cause problems. If you drink heavily, your dentist may ask you to stop, because heavy drinking can lead to a number of different issues with dental implants.

One effect of heavy drinking is a weakened immune system. Drinking too much may make it harder for your body to fight infections, and this could increase your risks of developing an infection after getting the implant.

According to research, heavy drinkers may also experience problems with dental implants simply because they are more likely to avoid following the instructions a dentist gives them after having a procedure. Because of this, they may end up with problems after getting the implant.

Get Your Blood Glucose Under Control

Finally, if you are diabetic, your dentist may require that you get your blood glucose level under control before having the procedure completed. People with diabetes have a higher chance of developing gum disease, and gum disease and dental implants do not mix well. The correlation between diabetes and gum disease involves elevated blood glucose. If a person has high blood glucose levels often, the extra sugar in this person's body can attack his or her gums.

Diabetes can also weaken your immune system making it harder for your body to fight infections. The best thing you can do if you have diabetes is to monitor your blood glucose often and take the necessary steps to keep the levels normal. Not only is this better for your oral health, but it is also better for your overall general health too.

If you smoke, drink excessively, or suffer from diabetes, you are not automatically considered a bad candidate for dental implants. Dentists view each patient's situation on a unique basis, because everyone's health, habits, and situation is different. If you would like to learn if you are a good candidate for dental implants, make an appointment with a dentist today to schedule an appointment. Dentists like Bruce Mathes DDS may be able to meet your needs in this area.