Does Severe Bone Loss Disqualify Me from Dental Implants?

by Andrew Mueller, DMD, MD | Aug 4, 2020

Are you missing many teeth and have noticed that your jawbone has become much thinner? Even if you’re considering dental implants to replace your teeth, you may have heard (or been told) that this severe amount of bone loss may disqualify you from this treatment option. While an inexperienced dentist might tell you that your bone loss is too far along to safely get dental implants, the good news is that a qualified oral surgeon will most likely say otherwise!

Why Jawbone Loss Occurs

The bone in your jaw wasn’t always the volume it’s at right now. With natural teeth in place, the jawbone remains healthy and strong. But as soon as even one tooth is lost or extracted, this bone will begin to resorb without stimulation from the tooth roots. Over time, this bone will become thin and weak. If many teeth are missing, the bone will not have enough volume or density to safely support dental implants. Bone loss that is severe enough will need the expertise of a dental specialist trained in complex surgical treatments such as bone grafting and zygomatic dental implants.

Qualifying for Dental Implants after Bone Loss

An oral surgeon has the training and specialization to guarantee (in virtually all cases) your candidacy for dental implants. Oral surgeons receive the highest level of surgical training in both dental implants and bone grafting. They are well-equipped to treat the level of complexity that severe bone loss presents. Your oral surgeon may provide specialized bone grafting services, though if your bone loss is in the upper jaw, may also recommend zygomatic dental implants. These implants secure into the cheekbones above the jaw and eliminate the need for bone grafting altogether. In either case, your oral surgeon will most likely have the skills and resources to complete the treatments needed to restore your smile with dental implants.

Schedule Your Consultation

If you’ve been previously told that you do not qualify for dental implants because of your bone loss, contact your local oral surgeon today.

About the Author

Andrew Mueller, DMD, MD

Dr. Andrew Mueller loves being an oral and Maxillofacial surgeon. After completing both dental and then medical school, he did a general surgery residency and an oral/maxillofacial surgery residency (both at Parkland hospital in Dallas, Texas). He has performed countless general anesthetics in the operating room, learning how to safely put patients to sleep and wake them back up.

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