The loss of a natural tooth is a devastating event. It’s more than just an aesthetic problem (although it’s undoubtedly challenging). A lost tooth can also lead to medical complications, including the degradation of jawbone integrity, the misalignment of adjacent teeth, and the increased risk of poor nutrition. However, dental implants are an effective, long-term solution that is ideal for patients of almost any age. Only a cosmetic dentist can determine whether dental implants might be right for you. However, you can use the following information as a general guideline.
Dental implants are appropriate for some young adults
All children will naturally lose their first set of teeth, which are usually replaced by permanent teeth. Occasionally, a child may have congenital hypodontia. This is a condition in which a permanent tooth does not erupt in place of a lost baby tooth. Another potential cause of missing permanent teeth in young children is physical trauma. A sports injury or car accident, for example, may lead to tooth loss in a child.
Unfortunately, dental implants are not suitable for young children. A child’s jaw will continue to grow and mature, often through the late teens and sometimes into the early twenties. It isn’t possible to place implants in an immature jaw because they can disrupt the normal development of the structure. This can lead to complications, including bite abnormalities, jawbone loss, gaps between the teeth, and craniofacial asymmetries.
An experienced cosmetic dentist can evaluate a young adult with permanent tooth loss to determine if the jaw has reached maturity. If not, then a removable bridge can complete the smile until the patient can receive implants.
Dental implants are a good choice for older people in good overall health
A significant percentage of Americans ages 65 and older have lost at least one of their natural teeth. This can have serious consequences on their overall health and quality of life. Fortunately, there is no strict upper age limit on dental implant patients. In fact, they have been successfully placed in patients who are well into their 80s!
Although there is no upper age limit, it is necessary to be in good overall health. Thoroughly review your medical history with your dentist to determine if you may be a good candidate for this treatment. In particular, your dentist will need to know if you smoke or have diabetes or osteoporosis. These medical issues can increase the risk of failure of the implant. Do note that it may still be possible for you to get implants if you have atrophy of the jawbone. However, you may need a bone grafting procedure first.
Schedule a consultation for dental implants in LI
Long Island Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry are pleased to provide specialized dental implant procedures to patients of nearly all ages. Our experienced team offers patient-focused care within a relaxing, stress-free setting. In addition, we emphasize the importance of patient education and high-quality follow-up care; we’ll walk you through each step of the process. Call us today to request a consult for dental implants in Huntington, Long Island.
Please note that our office is currently open to all appointments. Each staff member is following strict COVID-19 protocols to ensure the safety and health of our valued patients, staff, and community.
Additional resources on dental implants
- OsseoNews, Upper age limit for dental implant treatment? https://www.osseonews.com/upper-age-limit-for-implant-treatment/
- Mayo Clinic, Dental Implant Surgery, https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/dental-implant-surgery/about/pac-20384622