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3610 Calle Cuervo NW
Albuquerque, NM 87114
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3610 Calle Cuervo NW
Albuquerque, NM 87114

Am I A Candidate for Dental Implants?

June 29, 2024
Am I A Candidate for Dental Implants?

If you have a missing or damaged tooth, you may want to know whether you are a candidate for dental implants. These appliances can transform your smile and improve your quality of life.

Fortunately, most healthy adult patients are good candidates for dental implants. This blog will explain what makes a patient a candidate and describe the process of receiving implants.

Patients Eligible for Dental Implants

You can probably receive dental implants if you have one or more problem teeth. Here are several characteristics of the ideal implant patient:

Teeth Needing Replacement

A dental implant can replace just one tooth or an entire arch. No matter how many teeth you are missing, you may be able to receive a full, natural-looking smile.

Healthy Gums

A successful dental implant surgery depends on healthy gums. If the gums are not robust, you may experience a post-surgical infection and implant failure.

Strong Jawbone Mass

A dental implant needs adequate bone mass to place an anchor. If your tooth has been missing for any length of time, its socket will begin to reabsorb into your body. Patients with compromised jawbone mass can receive a dental bone graft to add more healthy tissue.

Good Overall Health

Good health is required for recovery from dental implant surgery. Patients with certain illnesses and chronic conditions may need to delay receiving implants.

The Dental Implant Process

Step 1: Consultation

Your first appointment will involve meeting the dentist and discussing your expectations. The dentist will take highly detailed digital scans of your oral structures to determine whether you are a good candidate for the procedure.

If you have low jawbone mass in the area where the implant will go, you will need a bone graft from an oral surgeon before proceeding.

Step 2: Removing the Damaged Tooth

Next, the damaged tooth will need to be extracted. Sometimes, the dentist can place the implant in the same appointment as the tooth extraction.

Step 3: Bone Grafting

Patients with compromised jawbone mass need to see an oral surgeon for a bone graft. A bone graft is a simple surgical procedure that places ground and sterilized bone material in the jawbone, covered by a dissolvable membrane. Over a few months, the bone material will encourage your body to produce new, healthy tissue.

Step 4: Dental Implant Placement

After any bone grafts have healed, you can proceed to dental implant surgery. The dentist provides anesthesia and inserts the small titanium anchor in your jawbone.

Step 5: Bone Healing

The anchor will permanently bond with your jawbone in osseointegration, creating a solid base for your final restoration.

Step 6: Abutment Placement

During your following procedure, the dentist places a stainless steel cap or abutment over the anchor. The abutment will hold the restoration.

Step 7: Final Restoration

After healing, the anchor and abutment will be ready to accept a crown, bridge, or denture. Your dentist will ensure the final restoration has a perfect fit. After your implant heals, you can eat anything you want without worry.

Potential Issues

Patients with the following conditions should speak to their primary care physician before planning implant surgery:

  • Any medical condition that impedes healing (cancer, uncontrolled diabetes, etc.)
  • Other health issues that preclude oral surgery
  • Untreated tooth decay or gum disease
  • Smoking or tobacco use
  • Pregnancy

Caring For Your Implants

Single-tooth dental implants require the same care as healthy teeth. To ensure your implant's health, brush and floss regularly and see your dentist often.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Implants

Which is better, implants or traditional dentures?

Dental implants have many advantages over conventional dentures. Implants do not slip, click, or trap food. They require significantly less maintenance and fewer follow-up visits. They keep the jawbone healthy and do not require relining. You can choose from single-tooth implants, bridges, and implant-supported dentures to meet your needs.

Is dental implant surgery uncomfortable?

Thanks to local anesthesia, the surgery itself is painless. However, you may experience minor discomfort while your implants heal. You may need over-the-counter or prescription medication. As healing progresses, you can gradually add your favorite foods to your diet.

Call Davis Gribble Hollowwa Dental

Dental implants can create a gorgeous, natural smile and boost your oral health. Your dentist can help determine whether you can benefit from this advanced procedure. Please call our Albuquerque, NM, office at 505-898-1976 to schedule a consultation today.

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3610 Calle Cuervo NW Albuquerque, NM 87114
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