Infected Dental Implants

Infected Dental Implants
Of the many tooth replacement options available, dental implant treatment is the most popular treatment preferred among adults in the United States (US). Approximately 500,000 US adults get dental implant treatment each year. Dental implants offer the stability, durability, and improved comfort that many of the alternative tooth replacement treatments do not. Additionally, dental implant treatment is highly successful, with an almost 95% success rate. But patients interested in dental implant treatment should know complications with the treatment can occur. Below are some of the complications that can occur with dental implant treatment.

What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are posts, commonly made from titanium or ceramic, that are surgically installed in the jawbone. Once placed, the implants are designed to act like the roots of new artificial teeth. After the installation, a several month healing period is essential to allow time for the dental implants to fuse securely with the jawbone. After this fusing process is successful, the implants are ready to provide a stable support for a new artificial crown or bridge.

Common Signs of a Dental Implant Infection
Although they are rare, complications with dental implant treatment can happen. The most common complication that occurs with implant treatment is an infected implant. Common signs of an infected dental implant that patients should be aware of include:
Pain and Difficulty Chewing: Some pain and discomfort can be expected immediately following the dental implant procedure. However, this discomfort should only last a few days after the procedure. If you are experiencing pain near your implant when you are talking and chewing that lasts longer than a few days, you should contact your dentist.

Fever, Redness, and Swelling: Immediately after surgery, it is also common to experience some redness and swelling around the implant site. This swelling should go away within a few days. If you have swelling that lasts for more than a few days, an infection may be developing. If you also have a fever with the swelling you should contact your dentist immediately.

Bad Taste in the Mouth: Bacteria can build up near the new implant site and cause an infection. This infection will create a bad taste in the mouth or bad breath that won’t go away.

Bleeding or Pus: In response to an infection, red and white blood cells will be sent by the body to the infection site. These blood cells can create a buildup of blood and pus. After the implant procedure, some light bleeding can be expected, but if this bleeding continues or pus develops, it may be an early signal of an infection.

Loose Implant: Osseointegration, or the process of the dental implant fusing with the jawbone after the implant surgery, is an essential step in the dental implant treatment. If your implant feels loose, it may be a sign that the implant is not successfully fusing with the jawbone. An infection is one of the potential reasons the fusing process is not occurring as it should be.