Why Tooth Care is So Important Even When They're Healthy

Dental Implants: Take Caution If You Have These Conditions

by Rene Jacobs

If your missing tooth makes you feel self-conscious, a good solution would be a dental implant. However, if you have a medical condition, you might need to take caution.

High-Risk Patients

There are some patients who might need to be more careful when getting dental implants or any other type of prosthodontics. If you have any of the following conditions, you may need extra care or treatment:

  • Periodontal disease
  • Diabetes
  • Heart valve defect

Periodontal Disease

Part of the success of dental implants is a process called osseointegration. An implant is made out of titanium and when implanted, it must fuse directly with the bone. Osseointegration occurs when the living cells in the bone attach themselves to the titanium implant, locking it to the jaw bone. Periodontal disease may prevent proper osseointegration. If the periodontal disease is not advanced, you could still get a dental implant but maintaining good oral health following the procedure is crucial.


One of the main reasons those with diabetes may not be candidates for dental implants is because they are more likely to develop gum disease. When there is gum disease present, it can advance to the point of pulling the gums away from the teeth and weaken the bone, which could prevent proper osseointegration. This is especially true if diabetes is not controlled. However, for those who have good glycemic control before and after the procedure, the success rate is comparable to those who don't have diabetes. For those who have Type 1 diabetes, the success rate for dental implants is not as high.

Heart Valve Defect 

Patients who have certain heart defects especially concerning the valves may be at risk for bacterial endocarditis, an infection of the lining of the heart. This infection can be caused when germs from the mouth flow through the bloodstream and attack damaged areas of the heart. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream during a dental procedure when the gum is cut into. For this reason it is recommended for those with heart valve conditions to take precaution before dental procedures including implants.

Consult a Prosthodontist

If you have any of the above medical conditions and you are considering dental implants, the first thing you will want to do is consult a prosthodontist, like Dr Ronald J Shupe Inc. These dentists specialize in helping patients who have missing teeth and other disorders of the mouth and jaw. Their extensive knowledge, experience and use of advanced technology will ensure you get the proper treatment. They will also take extra precaution with any medical condition you might have.