It was recommended that we see the best implant dentist in town for my daughter. The problem is, she was refused treatment.
My daughter is in her mid twenties and is disabled. Yet Down Syndrome hasn’t defeated her. In fact, she has a job and is independent. She does live at home, so we can help her when needed and make sure she keeps up with her medical appointments.
Oral health has always been a struggle though. In fact, she has lost several teeth because of decay and cavities. So, we have started looking into her options to replace the teeth. So, we were referred to the best implant dentist in the area. The same implant dentist continued to be recommended, and we made an appointment.
Sadly, the result was not what we expected. He basically refused to treat her. When I questioned him, he said he didn’t think my daughter would be able to keep up with hygiene at home. My heart is breaking for her and she is devastated. Do you have any advice? Do we have any other options?
-Janet in Washington, DC
It is understandable how discouraging this must be to you and your daughter. But, the fact of the matter is, even the best implant dentist is obligated to say no. In some cases, it is unethical to proceed with dental treatment. Unfortunately, as hard as it is to hear, your daughter may fit this criteria.
Dental implants are a major undertaking. There is the surgery, followed by months of healing. Then, the restorative portion of the process involves the permanent placement of the implant. If your daughter doesn’t have good oral hygiene habits, there is a strong possibility the the dental implant will fail. Therefore, when you look at all the time, effort and expense, it really would be doing your daughter a disservice to move forward.
If your daughter has lost teeth due to teeth decay, it is possible she may not be receiving the best preventative care. Regular cleanings and exams are essential in getting her back on track. Therefore, you may consider finding a new dentist. One that will increase the regular care she is getting at her periodic exams. Or you could ask the implant dentist you met with to make a recommendation to improve her care. If her oral hygiene improves, down the road she may be a dental implants candidate.
If dental implants still aren’t an option in the future, it may be worth it to look into a removable partial denture or a bridge. Ultimately, it will be best if she can get back on track with improved oral hygiene.
This post is sponsored by York PA dentist Donald H. Currie, DMD