Smoking and Dental Implants Don’t Mix
It’s fair to say that for the majority of people who lead a normal healthy lifestyle, they would be considered as good candidates for dental implants in Richmond. For example and indeed the rest of the country, over 10,000 dental implant operations are carried out each and every year on patients from all ages and backgrounds. However there is one criteria that will probably stop you from having dental implants in the majority of clinics and that is if you are a smoker.
So why is this?
Heavy smoking in particular has been known to cause patients to develop complications during the healing process after the implants have been fitted. The reason for this is that substances contained in tobacco smoke (primarily nicotine) have a tendency to slow down the process of healing. By slowing down the blood flow, it affects the healing process of the gums and bone tissue surrounding the implant which is vital for success.
Likelihood of developing infection
In addition to this, smokers are also more at risk from developing infection after the surgical procedure and not only this, recovery times from that infection are greatly increased. Therefore periodontal disease is often prevalent in smokers who want to have implants fitted.
Osseointegration or bone fusion is paramount if your dental implants are to thrive. The reasoning is that when a titanium implant is inserted into the bone, then after time (normally 1-3 months), the bone tissue starts to merge and fuse with the implant making for a super-strong platform upon which to attach the prosthetic crown. Smoking slows down the osseointegration process and can even weaken bone, thus causing the implant to loosen and eventually fall out.
Dilutes antibiotic strength
On most occasions a good course of antibiotics will clear up many minor problems that hamper implants, but substances in tobacco smoke tend to dilute the strength of the antibiotic causing them to cease being as effective.
So what’s the option?
The bottom line is that many clinics refuse to treat smokers who are looking to have dental implants for the reasons detailed above. So in light of the negative impact smoking has on dental implants, in Richmond at Sheen Dental we advise patients to try and give up at least one week before the procedure and for the duration of the recovery period. The bottom line is that you really do need to be mentally prepared to quit smoking for the duration and at Sheen Dental we even have our very own Smoking Cessation Advisor, who is able to offer guidance and support once you make the decision to quit for the duration.
If you want to find out more about how smoking can affect your chances of dental implants or anything else about the procedure in general, then contact us on 020 8876 5277 or visit our website at www.sheendental.co.uk