Do Implantations Pose Risks?

A dental implantation is always a surgical procedure and entails the insertion of foreign matter into the jaw. Naturally, such interventions are always associated with certain risks, which however can be minimized as long as a cautious approach is taken and, as a result, end up being significantly lower than feared by some patients. Occasionally, a friend may speak up and utter discontent with his implants, or there might be users in an online forum addressing the pain they experienced as a result of the procedure. For this reason, it is important to establish the proper context for these anecdotal findings and to do one’s own part in minimizing the existent but manageable risks by means of reaching independent and responsible decisions.

Carefully choosing the treating physician is very important. Consult an experienced impantologist or oral surgeon drawing on many years of experience in practice! Talk through the scheduled operation with him as trust is a very important factor! Thorough diagnostics by means of modern equipment prior to the operation is very meaningful. Ask your doctor whether he has a digital volume tomograph (DVT) at his disposal! The most significant risk in the course of an implantation is the formation of peri-implantitis, i.e. a bacterial infection right around the implant. Such an infection may not develop until some time has passed after the operation, thus going unnoticed for a longer period of time. If peri-implantitis remains untreated for too long, it can result in loss of or damage to the implant. For a long time, it was generally believed that peri-implantitis is provoked primarily by a bacterial infection. Nowadays, it is common knowledge that multiple different factors contribute to a situation like this in combination. One of these factors may also be a mistake having occurred during the operation (e.g. damage to the implant bed, nerves or blood vessels, bone trauma, false positioning of the implant). However, the most important reason tends to be a lack or deficiency of bone augmentation prior to the operation. In approx. 50 percent of all cases, the existing bone material is insufficient. Whenever insufficient amounts of bone substance (e.g. out of endogenous material) are formed, this may very well have a negative impact on the durability of the implants.