While dental implants will give you an attractive smile that will last for a lifetime, there are certain risks involved that you should know about. There are three main stages in dental implant treatment, and at each stage there is a likelihood of suffering complications or failures. Learning about the possible mishaps that could occur during or after the procedure will make it easier for you to make an educated decision about whether or not dental implants are something you would like to get.
- Infection in the gums
- Nerve damage
- Perforation of the sinus membrane by one of the titanium rods implanted in the jawbone
- Slow or incomplete healing of the surgical area, or failure of the implants to fully fuse to the jawbone.
- Temporary slurred speech
- Temporary swelling, pain, or tenderness at the surgical site
- A ceramic tooth can dislodge from the titanium rod.
- During your pre-treatment exam, provide your dentist with your full medical and dental history before getting dental implants, so that he or she can be aware of and prepare for any possible complications before or after the procedure.
- Stop smoking before the procedure to minimize the risk of infection to the gums.
- If you are diabetic, get your condition under control to minimize the risk of failed fusion of the implants to the jawbone.
Despite the risks listed above, over ninety percent of dental implant patients do not suffer any complications at all during or after the procedure. There is no danger of the titanium plates being rejected by your body, because titanium is an inert metal – meaning it is compatible with human tissue.
Titanium has been used, for example, in hip replacement surgery for the last four decades, with no adverse effects. In addition, if caught in time, infections can be treated. And if any of the ceramic teeth on top of the rods fall off due to poor fitting or damage caused during or after the procedure, they can easily be replaced.
While it will take anywhere from three to six months for the surgical site to fully heal and the bones to fully fuse to the implants, if you visit your dentist regularly for follow-up appointments there is no reason to fear that any complication will get totally out of hand and cause irreversible damage.
If you want to permanently replace your missing or decayed teeth, dental implants are a very safe and natural looking option. Talk to a clinic like Merrimack Valley Periodontics to learn more about this procedure.