Oral implant complications

Oral implant procedures are not 100% successful and there are some factors which you should take into account in order to increase the chances of successful implantation. If you are considering getting dental implants St Albans, it is important to keep an eye out to see if these considerations are being taken into account by your provider.

There are some providers who operate outside the UK who will accept international patients with very little consideration of the success rate of their implants. Although it may be tempting to take one of these dental holidays in order to receive cheap healthcare, it can often be more expensive in the long term. Also, the NHS will not cover the cost of correcting implants performed overseas and instead only provide dentures as a replacement if poorly performed implants have to be extracted.


Pre-existing dental conditions

Implants carried out while active gum disease or severe cavities persist are unlikely to be successful. No reputable UK dentist will continue with implantation without first treating those underlying conditions and making sure you have fully recovered before proceeding with the fittings.



Smoking reduces bone growth, tissue healing rate and blood flow. Although you can receive implants if you are a smoker, you’ll be strongly advised to stop or find alternatives like gum and nicotine patches during the implantation process.


Low jawbone density

There are several options for correcting low bone density in the jawbone, involving transplanting bone, usually from the hip or humerus. The use of X-rays or even CT scans before implanting is standard procedure. If your dentist is not carrying out X-rays or a CT scan, this should be seen as a red flag. If they’re willing to proceed (even if you know you have low jawbone density) without any other procedures or mitigation, this should also be seen as a sign of poor quality dentistry.


Pre-existing medical conditions

There are several medical conditions and prescription medications used to treat illnesses that add complexity to any surgical procedure. These are medications and illnesses that are often involved in blood clotting or tissue growth. There are also potential interactions between prescription medications and sedation used during procedures that must be explored. Your provider should carry out an in-depth look into your medical history and talk through any conditions you may have before fitting implants.

Experience of the practitioner

The experience of the surgeon carrying out your implants is relevant in their effectiveness and the success of the implant.

You should ask your dental surgeon/specialist dentist if they have a portfolio of past work and what their success rate is. You should also be cautious of clinics that promise to stabilise dentures with few implants, as when performed poorly, the longevity of the procedure is severely impacted.


Inappropriate maintenance

General oral hygiene is helpful in maintaining teeth, but is of particular importance after receiving implants, as any introduction of an infection to a newly placed implant can easily result in an abscess that can necessitate an extraction. But with regular brushing and the use of mild mouthwash, there should be no issues with post-operative care.


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