Despite the latest innovations in dentistry, tooth loss is still a common problem. At least 36 million Americans are missing one or more teeth. Nowadays, there are more options than ever to replace lost teeth; however, most patients prefer dental implants because they closely replicate the natural tooth structure. Although you’d like to enjoy their benefits for yourself, you’re concerned you might be too old for them. There isn’t any reason to worry. Patients who are well into their golden years are candidates for dental implants.
How is a Dental Implant Different?
A dental implant is unlike any other treatment because it mimics the entire tooth. A titanium implant post is surgically placed into the jaw to serve as a new root. The bone fuses to the post through a process called osseointegration. This provides a stable foundation for your all-ceramic restoration, which is connected to the post using an abutment.
Am I Too Old for Dental Implants?
Believe it or not, age is not necessarily a determining factor for dental implants. If you’ve finished growing, your age doesn’t matter. Patients 19 to 99 and beyond can rebuild a beautiful smile using the most successful teeth replacement option. Instead, there are several other factors your dentist will consider when determining if dental implants are right for you.
Who is a Candidate for Dental Implants?
If you’re missing 1 or more teeth, dental implants may be the solution for you. Often, patients who have good oral and general health are candidates; however, you’ll still need a thorough consultation with your dentist.
They will conduct a visual examination of your mouth and review a CT scan of your jaw to look for any concerns that might compromise the success of your new smile, like periodontal disease or bone loss. Your dental team will take the time to learn more about your medical and lifestyle history to look for any red flags, like diabetes or smoking.
Based on the results of your consultation, your dentist may recommend additional procedures before moving forward with your placement surgery, like periodontal therapy, bone grafting, or a sinus lift. Although it adds another step to your treatment plan, it helps create the healthy foundation your smile needs to thrive.
With the right aftercare, dental implants are proven to last for decades. It’s best to commit to your oral hygiene at home and visit your dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. With a proactive approach to your dental health, you can ensure your new smile lasts for a lifetime.
About Dr. Krista Cayo
Dr. Krista Cayo earned her doctoral degree at the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. She has also completed a certification in Advanced Education in General Dentistry to preserve her patients’ natural teeth. As a member of the American Dental Association and many other professional organizations, you can rest assured your smile is in good hands. If you’re ready to replace your missing teeth, contact our office today for an appointment.