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Dental Implants- Indications and precautions

Question:
Can my body reject the dental implant?

Answer:

Indications
A dental implant is the most advanced therapy for replacing a missing tooth. An implant is made out of an artificial titanium or zirconia root, that will support an prosthetic abutment, also made of titanium or zirconia / pressed ceramics, which will support the final crown( the future tooth ), that is either cemented or screwed on the implant. Today implants are widely used in dentistry. With a very high success rate, thousands of scientific papers and over 50 years of clinical trials, we can say that today, implants are a safe and predictable treatment. Nevertheless, like any other medical procedure, it has its indications and precautions. We will list the most common precautions related to implant therapy:

Age
The minimum age for placing a dental implant is 18 years old. We do not recommend placing dental implants prior to this age, because before this age natural teeth are still erupting. It is possible that they will still have a passive eruption. The implant however, is always fixed, and in a few years , the implant-restored tooth position will be higher than the corresponding natural teeth. This will result in an aesthetic problem, difficult to fix. In our philosophy, we will go for provisional restorations for patients younger than 19 years old, and will only place implants after this age, avoiding complications in this way.

Diabetes
Diabetes is one of the risk factors for implant therapy. Diabetic patients take more time to heal, and are more susceptible to post-op complications. Nevertheless, as long as the disease is compensated, it is not an absolute contra-indication for treatment, just a manageable risk.

Smoking
Another major risk factor for any surgical procedure is smoking. Smokers have practically less oxygen in their blood. This results in vasoconstriction, or reduced blood supply to the surgical site and slower healing.In the same time, the nicotine from each cigarette will interfere with the blood clot formation, making the healing even more difficult. In conclusion, a smoker will have increased risks of the surgery itself, and of the entire treatment outcome. We recommend our patients to quit smoking or reduce drastically the number of cigarettes they smoke.

Other systemic conditions : Osteoporosis, HIV, Hemophilia, Radio-therapy, etc.
Studies show that there are no absolute contra-indications for implant therapy, as long as the disease is compensated, and the surgery is well planned. In this cases, we will require however extra precautions, and we will communicate with the specialist treating the systemic disease before treatment.

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