Dentist Questions Dental Implants

Can anyone get dental implants?

My son is 12 years old and is now missing his front tooth after play-fighting (if you want to call it that) with his friends. I don't want him to have to live with that until he's an adult. Can children get dental implants? Or is there an age requirement?

9 Answers

It is not recommended to place implants in someone that is still growing. Ideally, at age 18-20 years old is the youngest age to consider implants. There are many ways to replace the missing tooth. Talk to your dentist to find out what they are.

Hope this helps,

Jossi Stokes, DDS
Most often, implants are used in adults or young adults who have stopped growing. Which usually means 18-21. Yes, I believe 12 is too young for an implant.

Just about anyone can get dental implants. There are situations, however, where it may not be possible. For example, a person who has uncontrolled diabetes would not be an ideal candidate. There are several other medical conditions that may be a "relative contraindication." In some cases, before an implant can be placed, other procedures such as bone grafting or sinus lifts may be required. If you're thinking about implant dentistry, it would be best to seek the services of a dentist, oral surgeon, periodontist, or prosthodontist.
Hope this helps.

Steven Chamish, DDS
I would not recommend an implant at this age. I would wait until he stops growing. In the interim, your dentist could provide transitional options. Additional thing to consider is whether there are any orthodontic needs.
Unfortunately, there is an age requirement for dental implants. If placed too early a child continues to grow and the implants can get submerged in the bone or poorly positioned over time. The rule of thumb is to place the implant when a child stops growing, perhaps 18-21 for boys. In the mean time, he can have an orthodontist make a retainer with an artificial tooth or have an appliance like a partial denture with an artificial tooth. 

Marc D. Thomas, DDS
He will need to be about 18 years old get an implant. You can use a retainer with a tooth until then.


Dr. Price

Thank you for your question. Unfortunately implants cannot be done until full growth is complete. For boys this is early 20’s before an implant can be done. In the meantime a removable appliance can be made or during orthodontics a fake tooth can be added to the braces to make it look like an existing tooth is still there. Another option is typically a Maryland bridge which attaches to adjacent teeth by bonding to the backside of the teeth on either side. I hope this answers your question!


Dr. Christianson
I am sorry about your son's front tooth. Your son's body and mouth are still growing. Usually, for a male, around age 22. his body will stop growing. BECAUSE growth makes changes to the way teeth are positioned in your son's mouth, placing even a crown should not be done. Even with a removable appliance, you will find you may have to replace it as your son is growing. You should keep in touch with your son's dentist. Your son should be monitored.