If you have lost one or more teeth and are considering dental implants, it’s important to consider the possible effects of medications on dental implants. One of the more common medications that may affect your dental implants is bisphosphonate, which many people take for osteoporosis. Because bisphosphonate changes the way your bones grow and heal, you may not be a good candidate for dental implants if you are taking them..
How Bisphosphonate Works
Because they’re solid and seem to reach a final form by the time we’ve reached adulthood, it’s easy to think of our bones as unchanging, but the truth is that they’re changing all the time. Our body is constantly taking apart and rebuilding our bones using two different types of cells: osteoclasts that remove bone and osteoblasts that add bone.
When we are young, these two processes are in balance, but as we age or if we’re affected by disease, it seems that osteoclasts outpace osteoblasts and we lose bone mass. Bisphosphonates impair the action of osteoclasts, so that osteoblasts can “get ahead” and build more bone mass.
How This Might Affect Your Dental Implants
You might think that only osteoblasts are important to your body’s healing process after dental implants are placed, but that may not be the case. Often, it’s important for the body to remove some bone to improve healing. Think of it this way: if your car is in an accident, would you get a better repair if your mechanic removed the damaged fender or just slapped a new one on top?
Therefore, some are concerned that bisphosphonates might have a negative impact on your dental implant’s integration into your jaw bone.
What Does the Science Say?
At this point, we don’t have clear scientific evidence one way or the other about bisphosphonates and dental implants. Most studies seem to suggest that there’s no negative impact, but some suggest that there might be. In the absence of clear scientific evidence, each implant dentist has to rely on his or her experience and judgment about whether it’s appropriate.
How We Can Help
At Country Club Dentistry, Dr. Rod Strober has workedon many complicated dental implant cases and can use his experience to help evaluate your condition to determine whether dental implants are recommended for you. Based on the state of your jaw, your response to therapy, and other factors, we may recommend a dental implant procedure now, or may recommend that you wait until you complete your current round of bisphosphonate treatment.