Am I Too Old for Dental Implants?
We at DFW Oral Surgeons hear this question a lot. Many of our patients over a certain age wonder if dental implants are safe or if they’ll be effective. The truth is, dental implants work just as well for seniors as they do for our younger patients. John C. Shillingburg, DDS and the rest of our highly skilled team want you to know that there is no “correct” age for dental implants. What matters most when determining if you’re a good candidate for dental implants is your health.
A dental implant is a metal post or screw that is surgically implanted by a dentist. The implant acts as a prosthetic tooth root for the crown or bridge that will replace the patient’s missing teeth. Once healed, the implant looks and behaves just like your natural teeth.
Whether the result of trauma, decay, disease, taking certain medications, or simple wear and tear, tooth loss can disrupt your health and your life. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, seniors 65 and over have an average of just 18 teeth. A significant percentage of those seniors have no remaining natural teeth. Tooth loss is a common occurrence among seniors, but for many years restorations have fallen short. Removable bridges and dentures are often uncomfortable, may slip, and inadvertently contribute to bone loss in the jaw.
We at DFW Oral Surgeons recommend dental implants for our senior patients because they work. According to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID), dental implants have a 97% long-term success rate. Implants are also permanent, easy to care for, effective, and even improve the overall health of your smile leading to a greater quality of life.
Many patients who have chosen dental implants to replace their failing teeth or dentures have experienced life-changing benefits. Dental implants look and feel just like your natural teeth, so you need never shrink from a social event. You can speak freely and eat confidently without embarrassment or fear of slipping dentures. Dental implants won’t decay, and you can care for them with proper oral hygiene including brushing and regular dentist visits. Best of all, dental implants fuse to your jawbone through a process called osseointegration, which invigorates your jaw and prevents bone loss. Your overall health and quality of life can be significantly improved with dental implants.
Requirements for Dental Implants
So if age isn’t a determining factor for successful dental implants, what is? Simply put, it’s your health. When you schedule a consultation at our Flower Mound, TX office, John C. Shillingburg, DDS will take into account your general, oral, and bone health, as well as any medications you may be taking when helping you choose your restoration. Adequate bone structure is required to support the implant, but this can be supplemented by a bone graft. Other health issues may need to be addressed before the dental implant can be placed.
Call us today at (972) 539-1491 to schedule a consultation and see if dental implants are right for you!
John C. Shillingburg, DDS
Certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
DFW Study Club Established in 2013 by John C. Shillingburg, DDS