Does Smoking Affect Dental Implants?

For many treatments and procedures that our dental practice offers, smoking dangerous tobacco products can have a negative impact on the benefits and results. Dental implants are no exception to this, as smoking can trigger negative complications. Most dentists will agree that smoking is not recommended if oral health and smile maintenance is important to you. Dental implants can be particularly impacted by the negative side effects of smoking, as the success of this restorative dentistry treatment is heavily reliant on the recovery process and the continued strength of the jawbone and gums. 

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are often viewed as the ideal option for replacing missing teeth that have fallen out or have been extracted. The implant is composed of a titanium post that is anchored to the jawbone beneath the gums. A durable dental crown then caps the implant on the surface. The anchored implant post is designed to ultimately fuse with the jawbone over time, essentially becoming an artificial tooth root. Dental implants are significantly dependent on the strength and health of the surrounding bone and gum tissue. 

What Are the Impacts of Smoking?

Smoking can be extremely detrimental to dental implants because the success of the procedure depends on the titanium post fusing with the bone. Smoking can slow recovery and the natural healing ability of the mouth and body. It can also degrade the overall health of the gums, teeth, and the rest of the mouth. If gums and tissues are not strong enough or are in poor health due to smoking, dental implants can potentially fail. Smoking can not only prevent people from being ideal candidates for dental implants, but it can also dramatically increase the risks of implant failure, infection, and other complications if the habit continues after implants have been placed. 

We typically advise patients to refrain from smoking for an extended period prior to implant placement, and to be sure and plan to avoid smoking after the procedure, as well (complete abstention from smoking in the future is preferred). For those seeking help in their attempt to quit smoking, our practice can offer some assistance. With options such as professional coaching, educational materials, and CHANTIX® treatment, our team can help you try to quit smoking forever. 

If you would like to know more about dental implants, the effects of smoking on oral health, or about other dental services that our practice offers, contact us today!