Top 3 Dental Implant Complications for Smokers

dental implant model held by woman at dental office

Dental implants are far and away the best option for tooth replacement. In fact, this procedure is known as one of the greatest advances to be made in dentistry in the past several decades Plus, the success rate of dental implants is more than 95 percent when they are cared for properly. Smoking, however, is one of the most common causes of dental implant failure. Below, learn more about the top three complications with dental implants that can occur in patients who smoke. 

#1: Failure to Heal

Numerous studies show that the risk of early dental implant failure during the healing phase is much greater in patients who smoke compared to those who do not, because it affects bone healing and regeneration. Because tobacco inhibits blood flow, healing is slower in patients who smoke. It may be so delayed that the bone never fuses together with the dental implants, leading to their failure. 

#2: Gum Disease

Over the long term, smoking increases your risk of developing periodontal disease, which, if left untreated, may eventually cause dental implants to fail. This is because smoking affects the bacteria in your mouth and limits blood flow to the gums as well as to the bone. The longer you have been smoking, the greater the risk that you will develop gum disease and dental implant complications. 

#3: Bone Loss

Peri-implantitis is the condition that causes bone loss around dental implants and eventually can make them fail, and it is often brought on or accelerated as a result of smoking. Peri-implantitis is an infection that develops around the dental implant; over time, the inflammation causes the bone to gradually disintegrate. 

Ready to Quit Smoking?

The best way to keep your dental implants healthy and secure for a lifetime is to quit smoking (and to stay away from the habit if you do not already smoke). If you are ready to kick the habit but unsure of how — or if you have tried without success in the past — talk to your periodontist or doctor about steps you can take to ensure that it works this time. Doing so will be the best decision you could make for your oral and overall health! 

Meet the Periodontist

Dr. Alexander Schrott is an expert in the field of dental implants and periodontics. Trained in the United States, Germany, and Switzerland, he offers a range of options for patients needing excellent periodontal and dental implant care. To learn more about the risks of smoking, how to quit, or to book a consultation, contact your periodontist in Belmont by phone at (617) 484-9240