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Overall, dental implant failure is low and there are no absolute contraindications to implant placement. However certain conditions have been found to be correlated with an increased risk of failure. If you are over age 60, smoked, had a history of diabetes or head and neck radiation, or were postmenopausal and on hormone replacement therapy there is a significantly increased chance of implant failure compared with healthy patients.


Even in healthy individuals it has been shown that alcohol and tobacco consumption can reduce the rate of success. These habits also have an effect on the rate of healing and may increase the chances of post-operative infection. 


Studies have shown that smoking significantly increases the risk of implant failure. If you smoke even lightly then your chances of success are reduced by 15% and if your smoke 20 or more cigarettes a day the failure rate may be 30%. For this reason implants are not recommended in smokers unless the habit is stopped. Starting smoking following implant placement is very likely to result in loss of implants which have successfully taken and cause infection of the gum surrounding the implant.

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