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Complications may occur in any medical or dental procedure even with the best planning and techniques.  Fortunately, complications are not common with dental implant therapy but could include:

  • Bleeding, bruising, swelling and discomfort may occur during or after surgery.

  • Gum disease may occur around implants in a small number of cases longer term and is more likely if you have a history of gum disease around teeth.  It is essential to keep your implants very clean and have regular hygiene appointments.

  • In a small number of cases, implant failure may occur after surgery or at a later stage and is more likely if you have been a smoker or have poor healing.

  • Very rarely damage to a nerve may occur resulting in altered sensation or in extremely rare cases pain.  Every effort will be made to avoid this complication.

  • Implant components and porcelain may chip or fracture due to wear and tear, heavy bite forces or trauma. Repair or replacement of the implant posts and crowns/bridges may become necessary periodically. Small porcelain chips may be best managed by smoothing the surface only.

  • Implants may fail if they are overloaded.  If more teeth are lost then the implants may be subjected to higher loads and consequently start to lose bone support and eventually fracture or fail.  To prevent this it is important to replace teeth that are subsequently lost, usually with more dental implants.


Bone grafting also may have complications including:


  • Bone graft success rates are around 90% and so some failures may occur.  Failure most commonly means that the graft is dissolved by the body and does not produce enough bone for implants to be placed. 

  • Infection from the bacteria present in the mouth could occur resulting in the graft failing.  It is important to take your antibiotics to reduce this risk.

  • Implants placed in grafted bone also have slightly higher risks of not taking.

  • Swelling, bruising and pain may occur.

  • Bone graft materials we use may include bovine or human donor bone and porcine collagen (these will have been discussed with you fully if we are planning to use them, and your consent obtained).  All materials have been sterilized and tested to the highest standards and have excellent safety records, otherwise we would not use them.  However, no product can ever be certified absolutely free from risks such as infections, allergic type reactions or rejection.

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