Dental implants are suitable for most adults with good general health. They can only be used once the jawbone has stopped growing
and so generally are not used with younger patients.
Habits such as heavy drinking or smoking can increase the number of problems associated with initial healing and thereafter may be
bad for the long-term health of gum and bone surrounding each implant. Some dentists will decline to place implants if smoking cannot
be reduced or given up altogether.
However, each case is different and if you do have any medical problems then speak to your doctor or dentist prior to starting any
treatment – it is only in some circumstances that health problems prevent the use of dental implants altogether.
How will you know if you are suitable for implants?
At your initial consultation the dentist will assess the feasibility of providing implant treatment. You will be expected to answer
detailed questions concerning your medical history and there will be a complete examination of your mouth and remaining teeth to discover
the nature and extent of any current dental problems. Usually x-rays will be taken and models of the teeth prepared so that these can be
examined after your visit.
These x-rays and models will be used to determine the optimal position for an implant, how many implants can be placed in the gap and
the quality and volume of bone that is available.
Establishing good basic dental health is a key stage in any treatment plan. At this first appointment you should be made aware of which
problems are urgent, and what treatment is required to stabilise any gum- or tooth-related problems. It would be reasonable to expect a
verbal outline of how your particular implant treatment might be approached.