95% of dental implants are a success, and with proper care that figure rises to 98%. However, as with any surgical procedure there are risks and complications.
Infections – Peri-implantitis
The peri-implantitis is an inflammation around the implant and one of the most common complications of dental implant surgery. Peri-implantitis is the inflammation of the gum tissue or the bone or both located around the dental implant. It is periodontal disease causing bone loss and the failure of dental implants. Peri-implantitis can occur months are even years after implant surgery. Smoking, diabetes, or if a patient doesn’t maintain good oral hygiene raise the risks of getting the infection. Peri-implantitis can also be caused by the dental cement used to mount crowns contaminating the gum tissues. In most cases the implant has to be removed.
Osseointegration occurs when the jawbone fails to fuse properly with the implant and becomes loose or risks fall outing. The implant may also fail if after a year there is bone loss of more than 1 mm and 0,2 mm during the subsequent year. Reasons for this failures to happen are many: the dental implant may have been improperly positioned, the bone insufficient, the tissue around the implant damaged, overloaded, or as the result of some external factors.
One of the methods of dental implant treatment involves immediate loading during the procedure. This means that when the dental implant is in position, the crown is mounted immediately. In case of doing a delayed replacement the crown is placed on the implant after it has properly fused with the bone. Doing it immediately after placing the implant shortens the treatment significantly but due to unfinished fusion, may lead to complications. Overloading occurs when the crown or abutment protrudes and is subjected to pressure which disrupts the process of osseointegration.
Problems involving sinuses
In upper row teeth replacement, the sinuses can be a serious issue complicating the dental surgery. If the bone is insufficient a sinus augmentation is performed. This way the dental surgeon is able to make the bone sufficient enough to support the dental implants. To do this the dentist has to create space for the bone graft. He is able to do this by lifting the existing bone into the sinus cavity. The dentist must proceed with caution because there is risk of infection if the implant juts into the sinus cavity. The dentist should be informed of any sinus problems, before any procedures.
Damage to the nerves or tissue
Infrequently, the tissue around the implant becomes damaged. This is especially dangerous when the dental implant is inserted too close to a nerve. When that happens patient can suffer from severe pain in several parts of the mouth, with permanent nerve damage. Such procedures should be only performed by highly experienced dentists.
In the case of very sever pain or bleeding after surgery, the patient should immediately contact their dentist.
Other risks and complications
There are other minor risks that could occur. One of them is that the implant could break. If the post of the dental implant is not positioned properly and protrudes it could be subjected to too much pressure and bend or fracture. This could also result from blunt force trauma, perhaps in a fall.
Another rare case is when the body rejects the implant because it does not recognise it as a part of the body. Yet another rare occurrence is the case in which the patient has an allergic reaction to the titanium.