How Can Diabetes Affect Dental Implants?
Dental implants are one of the most highly recommended treatments for adult tooth loss. Dental implants fuse with the jawbone to act as artificial tooth roots that can support crowns, bridges, and dentures. While dental implants offer a number of benefits that set them apart from other tooth loss treatments, the procedure is not right for all patients.
Diabetes is one condition that has the potential to compromise the success of dental implant treatment. Dentists from Brooklyn Heights Dental, which serves Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, Fort Greene, and surrounding areas, help patients understand how diabetes could affect dental implants, and whether or not dental implant treatment is appropriate for diabetics who have suffered tooth loss.
Diabetes and Potential Dental Implant Complications
When determining dental implant candidacy, dentists must take into account the patient’s medical history and current health. One condition that must be considered is diabetes. Diabetes is a metabolic condition that compromises the body’s ability to process glucose. Diabetics are either unable to produce enough insulin to break down glucose, or the body fails to respond to insulin. In either case, diabetes can result in high blood sugar levels.
High blood sugar levels are a concern when it comes to dental implants since they can slow healing and prohibit the body’s ability to fight infection. As a result, diabetics with uncontrolled sugar levels face a higher risk of infection and are more likely to suffer from dental implant failure. Dental implant failure refers to situations where dental implants do not fuse with the jaw bone and are therefore unable to support dental restorations.
Can I Get Dental Implants if I’m Diabetic?
Given the potential risks of diabetes following dental implant treatment, it is natural to wonder if diabetics are ideal candidates for this treatment. In most cases, the answer is actually yes. The risks associated with diabetes are all linked directly to high blood sugar levels. However, many diabetics are able to keep blood sugar levels under control through diet, exercise, and/or medication. If diabetic patients keep their blood sugar levels within a healthy range, there is no reason that dental implant treatment should not be a success.
According to a review of dental implant survival in diabetic patients, which was published by the National Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery, most studies found that the success rate of dental implants in diabetic patients was comparable to those of non-diabetics. Furthermore, the success rate of diabetic patients with well/fairly controlled diabetes was equal to or insignificantly lower than dental implant success rates in non-diabetic patients.
Promoting Dental Implant Success
Once it is determined that a patient is an ideal candidate for dental implants, the risk of post-treatment complications is extremely low. Still, there are steps that patients can take to further promote dental implant success. These practices can be especially beneficial for diabetic patients:
- Closely follow all post-treatment care instructions
- Practice good oral hygiene habits, including regular brushing and flossing
- Keep dental implant incision sites clean
- Maintain a well-balanced diet
- Monitor blood sugar levels and keep them within a healthy range
Contact Brooklyn Heights Dental
If you have experienced adult tooth loss, dental implants offer a strong, durable, and comfortable replacement for missing teeth. To find out more about dental implant treatment and whether you may be an ideal candidate for this procedure, send us a message online, or call (718) 857-6639 and schedule an appointment at Brooklyn Heights Dental.