When you think about someone with false teeth, you probably would associate that scenario with an older person. Unfortunately, our Western diet contains many things such as sodas, high amounts of refined sugars, and artificial sweeteners. These can all cause teeth to decay prematurely. Also, many bad habits such as drug use and smoking have a serious effect on teeth. As a result of these and other factors, there are individuals of all ages who are in need of new teeth.
Between a person’s mid 30s and mid 40s, two thirds of individuals are likely to have lost at least one tooth to decay, gum disease, or an accident. By their 70s, one in four people will need all of their teeth replaced. Since dental implants can be used to replace all of a person’s teeth, or even just a single tooth, there are varying ages that a person will typically need this type of services.
While implants are significantly more expensive than dentures, they are far more common of a purchase for younger patients. There are several reasons for this. First of all, implants are designed to be a far more permanent replacement, since they are not taken out and put back in, but are grafted to the bone itself. A younger patient may go through a number of pairs of dentures over the course of their lifetime, but a dental implant is typically a one time procedure. If any of the crowns need to be replaced, that can be done without having to change the implant.
Here are the only real restrictions on this service. First of all, your jaw has to be at a point that it won’t affect formation. That means for boys who continue growing longer than girls, dental implants shouldn’t really be performed before the age of 17. Since girls finish maturing physically early, they can have implants at age 15.
The other restriction is bone density. No one every really gets too old to have dental implants put in. If you intend to live on for any amount of time, you should be able to chew, enjoy your food, and smile without embarrassment. Unfortunately, as we age, our bones become less dense. This limits the success rate of a implant being grafted to the bone properly. Thus, insurance won’t always cover dental implants for older ones. Other categories that are considered unlikely to complete the bone graft are post menopausal women and smokers. Both circumstance significantly reduce jaw bone density.