Candidacy for Dental Implants

Thanks to advancements in technology and implant dentistry, most people who are missing teeth are good candidates for dental implants. The best way to find out if you are a dental implants candidate is to visit a highly trained implant dentist like Dr. William Davey Crockett. At his Richmond, VA, dental practice, Dr. Crockett uses the latest imaging technology to thoroughly diagnose any issues that might need to be addressed before receiving dental implants. He can then design a custom treatment plan that meets your needs and helps you take advantage of this multi-beneficial solution. 

Evaluating Your Candidacy 

During your exam, Dr. Crockett will complete a full evaluation of your oral and overall health to make sure that dental implants are a good option for you. He will capture images of your teeth and jaws using digital X-rays and 3-D computerized tomography (CT) scans.

dental x-ray

Digital X-rays help us evaluate the jaw and determine the best placement strategy for dental implants.

Requirements for Dental Implant Candidates 

We will evaluate your candidacy based on several factors:

Healthy Jawbone Structure 

Dental implants need to be placed in a sufficient amount of healthy jawbone tissue. This can be an issue for patients who have been missing one or more teeth for a prolonged period because bone loss naturally occurs after tooth loss. However, there are options for patients with insufficient bone tissue:

  • Bone Grafting: During this procedure, Dr. Crockett will use donor tissue or synthetic bone tissue to restore areas of your jawbone that have receded. Studies have shown that implants placed in grafted bone are just as stable as those placed into non-grafted tissue.
  • All-on-4®: During this special dental implant procedure, Dr. Crockett will place four implants in your jawbone. Because two of the implants are strategically placed at an angle, they can support an entire arch of teeth with less bone tissue, making them a great option for patients who have suffered mild bone atrophy.
  • Sinus Lift: If your sinus cavity is too close to the implant site, Dr. Crockett may recommend a sinus lift. This involves adding bone tissue in order to lift the sinuses and create room for implants. 
Thanks to advancements in technology, most people with missing teeth are candidates for dental implants.

Good Oral Health 

To qualify for implants, you need to be in good oral health. If Dr. Crockett identifies gum disease or tooth decay during your initial exam, he will need to treat these conditions before beginning treatment. When left untreated, gum disease can lead to peri-implantitis and dental implant failure. 

Good Overall Health  

You need to be healthy enough to undergo surgery. Patients who have a complicated medical history including heart disease or recent heart attacks, active cancer treatment, or certain bone diseases such as osteoporosis may not be good candidates for implants.

If you have diabetes, you may still be a good candidate for implants. Studies have shown that patients with controlled glucose levels can experience the same success as non-diabetic patients. 

Smoking 

In addition to increasing your risk of gum disease and other health issues, smoking can increase your risk of dental implant complications and implant failure. Therefore, it is recommended that you quit smoking if you are considering dental implants. 

Age 

Dental implants are not recommended for patients under 18 years of age because their bones are still developing. However, there is no age ceiling for dental implants, and they can be a great option for many seniors who need to replace missing teeth. 

Find out If You Are a Candidate 

Thanks to advancements in technology, most people with missing teeth are candidates for dental implants. Dr. Crockett has the technology and solutions needed to restore your candidacy for implants in most cases. To learn more, contact our practice at (804) 282-2990 or request an appointment online