Q. Can dental implants be placed successfully at age of 74?

Answered by
Dr. Bharat Joshi
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 15, 2023

Hello doctor,

My mother, aged 74, has lost most of her teeth due to negligence. A few years back, when her teeth condition was better, we got her dentures for some missing teeth. However, the denture wires kept poking her gums despite re-adjustments. So, now, she is reluctant to get dentures. I am hesitant about implants because it requires drilling into the bone. At her age, I am afraid that bone density will be lower and recovery time will be higher. Kindly let me know if there are any possible solutions.



Welcome to

At this age, implants are not successful, but the studies state that implants can be given at any age, even at 74. Considering the age, fixed partial dentures or implant-supported dentures could be best since a removable partial denture is not successful due to excessive ridge resorption. Also, interim or transient dentures could be an option for esthetic looks. So I suggest fixed partial dentures if some teeth are present, and if only a few are there, then implant-supported dentures could be the best.

Thank you.

Hello doctor,

Thank you for the reply. I have a few questions about your response. First, her few remaining teeth are rotten. Do these need to be removed before further procedures? Regarding implant dentures, will the procedure be painful? At her advanced age, will bone density be an issue? How many holes will be required for implant dentures, four for the top and bottom? Even with fewer or no teeth, could we proceed with a less invasive and painful procedure such as flexible dentures?



Welcome back to

If RCT (root canal treatment) is successful for the remaining rotten teeth, extractions would not be needed. They can provide additional support for fixed partial dentures. I agree regarding the bone density factor, but implant placement depends on it. A CBCT (cone beam computed tomography) scan report is required, and transgingival probing or bone sounding and nerve involvement need to be checked. Four holes would be done for implant-supported dentures, two at the anterior and two at the posterior. The whole procedure will be under local anesthesia with no pain. Lastly, if the number of teeth remaining is more than 15, the implant option could be avoided. I hope I have answered all your queries. If you need any more details, please consult your specialist.

Thank you.

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