According to a new study by Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine and published in the International Journal of Dentistry, osteoporotic women with dental implants may experience a higher overall quality of life.
The study included 237 participants and compared those who are missing teeth but have dental implants against those who are missing teeth and do not have dental implants, examining their occupational, emotional, and sexual health, and their overall quality of life. The study concluded that dental implants seem to significantly impact a woman’s quality of life positively compared to those who have missing teeth but instead use removable dentures, partial restorations, or no fixed dental restoration at all.
Dental implants are often favored over removable dentures or partial restorations due to their permanence, ease of use, and security. While there are many types of dental implants, the mechanics are the same. First, a small, medical-grade titanium post is surgically inserted into the jaw bone. This post, called the implant, will integrate with the natural bone of the jaw over a period of several weeks. Next, an abutment is then attached to the implant screw and holds together the implant and the crown. Finally, the crown is placed on top of the abutment. The crown is a porcelain restoration that looks like a natural tooth. Dental implants are secure and permanently fixed to the mouth, which is convenient for those who do not want to worry about the hassle of removable dentures.
Osteoporosis, meaning “porous bone,” is a common medical condition that results when there is either a loss of bone or too little bone is regenerated. Because of this, those with osteoporosis are more prone to breaking or fracturing bones. Osteoporosis occurs due to a number of factors, such as aging, hormonal changes, or a deficiency of calcium or vitamin D. Osteoporosis is more common in women than in men. Loss of estrogen during menopause is also a contributing factor for osteoporosis in women.
The disease also has extreme implications for oral health, as bone loss in the jaw can directly lead to tooth loss, and a weakened jaw bone due to osteoporosis can result in ill-fitting dentures or the need for a bone graft.
While dental implants are a popular and satisfactory option for many, taking the steps to prevent tooth loss and osteoporosis as much as possible is always best. Routine oral hygiene practices and staying on top of your general health are your best bets for a healthy smile and body. If you are interested in dental implants, have questions, or would like to schedule a consultation, please contact our office today for an appointment.