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Are Implants Safe? The Benefits and Risks of Dental Implants

Are Implants Safe? The Benefits and Risks of Dental Implants

Are Implants Safe? The Benefits and Risks of Dental Implants - Dentist Edmonton - Twilight Dental Group

Dental implants can improve your speech and self-image but the surgery is not without risk. Keep reading to discover the benefits and risks of dental implants.

According to the most recent data, 6.4% of Canadians are completely toothless. Millions of others are missing at least one tooth.

If you're one of these individuals, it's time to consider getting dental implants. Tooth implants are among your best options to replace missing teeth. Implants, which look and function like natural teeth, have an average success rate of near 100%.

Despite this, there are still some risks of dental implants that you should be aware of. Dental implant failure and complications, although rare, still occur.

We'll discuss the key risks associated with tooth implants below, so be sure to keep reading!

The Safety of Dental Implants

Most types of dental implants used today make use of titanium or titanium alloys. In fact, these are also used in orthopedic implants and even artificial hearts.

The main reason behind this is titanium’s impressive biocompatibility. Being biocompatible means that the material isn't toxic or harmful to living tissues.

Titanium's low electrical conductivity makes it one of the most biocompatible materials today. This characteristic allows it to be highly resistant to corrosion.

As such, titanium implants shouldn't corrode or rust when placed inside living tissue. This makes them very safe and non-toxic to humans.

The Risks of Dental Implants

Dental implant failure rates range from 1% to 2%.

One of the main reasons tooth implants fail is due to bacteremia development. In some cases, bacteria can contaminate the implant itself during its insertion. The bacteria can then infect the implant site and the surrounding areas.

What if you're like half of Canadians with gingivitis, can you still get implants? Yes, you definitely can, so long as you have the infection treated first. Once your gums are back in good health, you may already be a good implant candidate.

Other Risk Factors for Dental Implant Failure

Dental implants can also fail due to bad oral hygiene. People with certain medical conditions, like diabetes, are also at a higher risk of implant failure.

Poor Oral Hygiene

Most side effects of dental implants often affect patients with poor oral hygiene. Tartar, for instance, can build up on the artificial tooth and affect the gums around the implant. This hardened plaque can then irritate the gums and trigger infections.

Left untreated, this infection can spread all the way into the area around the implant.

Poorly-Controlled Diabetes

In people with diabetes, wounds take a longer time to heal. This makes them more susceptible to infections and surgical complications. Diabetes may also impair the healing process of the gums and bone after implant surgery.

However, dental implants are still successful in patients with properly controlled diabetes. In fact, studies show that they have a success rate comparable to people without diabetes.

Placement Despite Lack of Bone Support

Some dental implants can fail early if there's not enough bone to secure the implant. This can happen if a dentist still pushes through with the surgery even if the patient has a severe bone loss. At Park Fee Dental, we ensure adequate bone is present to reduce these risks and in cases where significant bone loss is noted, bone grafting is used to increase bone density prior to an implant being placed.

Physical Trauma

Biting down on something really hard can dislodge an implant that's still healing. An accident that involves a blow to the mouth area can also be powerful enough to loosen the implant. All these can increase the risk of implant failure.

The Signs of Unsuccessful or Failed Dental Implants

Complications from dental implants can occur shortly after the surgery. Infections and other problems can also happen several years after the procedure.

Note, however, that some level of discomfort and swelling is normal after the surgery. In successful procedures, these signs should go away after a week or so. Pain or inflammation several weeks after may already indicate an infection.

Below are some of the common signs of implant failure that you should be on the lookout for.

Pain and Swelling At the Implant Site

Again, infections can happen during implant surgery. This is why it's best to choose a highly experienced implant dentist.

However, most infections after implant surgeries arise from a patient's habits and lifestyle. Smoking, alcohol consumption, and poor oral hygiene can all trigger infections.

Gum Recession

Gum recession happens when the tissues around the teeth pull back or away from the teeth. Receding gums expose more of the teeth surfaces, leading to longer-looking teeth.

In failed dental implants, receding gums can occur due to bad oral hygiene. In some cases, they can also occur due to untreated gum disease prior to surgery.

Moving Implants

Failed implants may feel as if they move whenever you bite down or chew. This is often accompanied by discomfort, but in some cases, there's no pain at all. The artificial tooth itself may also become loose.

Reducing Your Risks of Implant Failure

Since dental implant placement is still a surgery, it still carries some risks. A highly-experienced dentist, however, can reduce these risks of dental implants. Following your dentist's aftercare instructions will also help prevent implant failure.

If you’re avoiding dental implants due to fear of the procedure itself, there’s always the option of going to sleep for the treatment. At Park Fee Dental we offer the option of general anaesthesia with any dental procedure, you could sleep through the entire surgery!

Ready to fill those gaps in your mouth with natural-looking, jawbone-stimulating implants? Then please don't hesitate to connect with our dental team now! Schedule a consultation now so we can help you determine if you're a good candidate for implants.

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