Can You Get Dental Implants if You Have Gum Disease?

Can You Get Dental Implants if You Have Gum Disease?

February 1, 2023

Gum disease is highly preventable with excellent hygiene habits and a proper diet. When caught early, gum disease or periodontal disease is treatable and reversible. Gum disease refers to a serious inflammation or infection of the gum tissues. It’s commonly caused by bacterial plaque and tartar on teeth and around the gum line.

Gum disease is a leading cause of bone loss and teeth loss. The periodontal bacteria is also closely associated with an increased risk of chronic health conditions like heart attacks, stroke, certain cancers, diabetes, and coronary artery disease. Most gum disease patients often wonder whether they can replace lost teeth with dental implants. Keep reading to find out.

Signs of gum disease

Treating gum disease will prevent your condition from advancing to severe stages, which leads to tooth and bone loss. Therefore, you should seek treatment as soon as possible if you experience any or other signs of gum disease like:

  • Red, tender, or swollen gums
  • Gums that bleed easily, especially when brushing and flossing
  • Pus between teeth
  • Gum recession or gums pulling from teeth
  • Teeth appearing long than usual
  • Loose or falling teeth
  • Persistent bad breath

Visiting the dentist for routine dental exams and cleanings twice yearly can help catch and treat gum disease early and prevent severe outcomes like tooth loss.

What are dental implants?

An implant consists of three parts: the implant post, the abutment, and the restoration crown. The implant post is implanted into the jawbone to act as artificial roots for the fake tooth. The abutment is placed on the implant to connect it with the outer crown. Lastly, a dental crown that acts like an artificial tooth is placed over the abutment.

Since dental implants are supported by the jawbone (like your natural teeth), they offer the best stability, durability, natural appearance, and strength. After the procedure, the implant should feel, look, and function like your real teeth. Some of the benefits of implants include:

  • Improved bite and speech functions
  • Improved jawbone density
  • Improved appearance
  • Improved oral hygiene and health

Do dental implants require healthy gums?

Dental implants work and look like natural teeth. Dental implants are surrounded and supported by the gums like your natural teeth. Unhealthy and receding gums may not sufficiently support the implant and can even expose the artificial root, increasing your risk of infections like peri-implantitis.

Similarly, having advanced gum disease or periodontitis can weaken and infect your jawbone, making it insufficient to support a dental implant successfully. You must have healthy gums and sufficient jawbone density and volume to support an implant successfully.

Can you have teeth implants with gum disease?

You can’t get dental implants with gum disease. However, implants aren’t out of the question entirely. Patients with gum disease considering dental implants can qualify for implant surgery as soon as they treat their condition. The right treatment option will depend on your specific conditions.

Mild and moderate gum disease can be treated with non-surgical treatments, while advanced stages might require more invasive treatments like surgery. Common gum disease treatments include:

  • Deep cleaning: Also known as scaling and root planing, the dentist uses a cleaning device to scrap off plaque and tartar from the teeth and around (below and above) the gum line. The dentist also smoothens the teeth roots to encourage the gums to reattach to the teeth and discourage plaque buildup.
  • Perio protect: The treatment uses custom perio trays to deliver liquid medication deep under the gums. The treatment fights off bacterial infection and encourages the gums to heal. Sometimes it can also freshen your breath and whiten your teeth.
  • Excellent daily hygiene and good habits: Avoid bad habits like smoking, drinking alcohol, and drug abuse.
  • Surgery: Gum disease surgeries include gum flap surgery and grafting.

After clearing up the disease, the dentist or surgeon will examine your mouth to determine whether you’re eligible for dental implant surgery. If the condition is too advanced and you can’t qualify for dental implants, you can consider other options like dentures and dental bridges.

Preventing gum disease after dental implants

After dental implant surgery, below are key tips to protect your smile and prevent gum disease and peri-implantitis:

  • Avoid tobacco products.
  • Practice excellent brushing and flossing.
  • Eat a healthy diet.
  • Schedule routine dental cleanings and exams.
  • Treat underlying conditions like diabetes and heart disease.

Are you interested in dental implants in Danbury, CT?

For more information about dental implants and periodontal treatments in Danbury, CT, contact Danbury Smiles – George Landress, DDS, MAGD.

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