If you have a missing tooth, you might be thinking of getting a dental crown implant. An implant is a good way to replace a missing tooth, but you'll need to undergo a period of healing after the procedure. Smoking could interfere with your healing process. That doesn't mean you can't get an implant if you smoke, but you should discuss your smoking with the implant dentist. Here are some possible concerns your dentist might have.
The Implant Has To Fuse With Your Bone
When you get an implant, the dentist places a small rod through your gum and into your jaw bone. The goal is for the implant to fuse with the bone so the dental crown is held in place securely. Smoking might slow down this process, so your dentist might recommend you stop smoking for a few months after the procedure until your implant and jaw bone have fused.
Adequate Blood Flow Is Needed For Healing
Smoking can reduce blood flow, and that reduces the oxygen available for your gums and bone to heal after surgery. Smoking can also affect your immune system, and that makes healing more difficult. Your dentist might recommend you stop smoking a few weeks before your dental crown implant so your blood flow and immune system are in the best shape to help you heal as quickly as possible.
Good Oral Health Supports Your Dental Crown Implant
Once you've had your implant, you want to maintain good oral health so your teeth and implant stay healthy and don't fail. Initially, this includes changes to your diet, drinks, snacks, and habits such as smoking. Once the implant has fused, it's important to maintain good oral hygiene, and that could include keeping your general health in good shape.
Smoking can give you dry mouth, and dry mouth increases your risk of cavities and gum disease. Smoking's effect on blood flow and your immune system can also increase the risk of gum disease. While your dental crown won't get cavities, you can get gum disease around the implant. The best course is to stop smoking completely, because this would also benefit your general health. However, if you don't plan to stop permanently, talk to your implant dentist about the best way to care for your implant and general oral health so your mouth, teeth, gums, and dental crown implant avoid complications caused by smoking.
Since you'll likely be asked to stop smoking before and after your dental implant procedure, you'll want to know this in advance so you can get help to quit well before the procedure. If you have your urges under control before you get your dental crown implants, it might be easier to avoid cigarettes permanently, or at least until your dental surgery has healed completely.