Can Implants Get Infected?

Can Implants Get Infected?

The simple answer is yes. Implants, including dental implants, are susceptible to infections just like any other part of the body. Here is everything about dental implants, how they can become infected, signs of infection, whether infected implants can be saved, and how to care for dental implants to prevent infections.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots made of titanium or titanium alloy that are surgically placed into the jawbone to support replacement teeth or dental prostheses. They are a popular and effective long-term solution for replacing missing teeth because they provide a stable foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth.

Dental implant infections

While dental implants have a high success rate, they can sometimes become infected. Dental implant infections can occur during the healing process after implant placement or years later due to various factors such as poor oral hygiene, smoking, certain medical conditions, or trauma to the implant site.

How can a dental implant get infected?

Dental implants can become infected through various means, including:

Bacterial contamination during surgery:

Despite strict sterilization protocols, bacteria can still find their way into the implant site during surgery, leading to infection.

Poor oral hygiene:

Failure to maintain proper oral hygiene, including brushing, flossing, and regular dental check-ups, can allow bacteria to accumulate around the implant and cause infection.


Smoking can impair the body's ability to heal properly after surgery and increase the risk of infection.

Medical conditions:

Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, autoimmune diseases, and cancer, can compromise the immune system, making the body more susceptible to infections.

Signs that a dental implant is infected

It's essential to recognize the signs of a dental implant infection early to seek prompt treatment. Common signs of infection include:

  • Pain or discomfort around the implant site
  • Swelling or inflammation of the gums
  • Gum recession around the implant
  • Loose or unstable implant
  • Pus or discharge around the implant
  • Foul taste or odor in the mouth

If you experience any of these symptoms, it's crucial to contact your dentist or oral surgeon immediately for evaluation and treatment.

Can infected dental implants be saved?

Whether an infected dental implant can be saved depends on various factors, including the severity of the infection and the extent of bone loss around the implant. In some cases, the infection can be treated with antibiotics, and the implant can be salvaged. However, if the infection has caused significant damage to the surrounding bone or if the implant has failed to integrate properly, it may need to be removed and the site allowed to heal before considering replacement options.

How can you take care of your dental implants?

Proper care and maintenance are essential for preventing infections and ensuring the long-term success of dental implants. Here are some tips for caring for your dental implants:

Maintain good oral hygiene:

Brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss daily, and use an antibacterial mouthwash to reduce the buildup of plaque and bacteria around the implants.

Visit your dentist regularly:

Schedule regular check-ups and cleanings with your dentist or periodontist to monitor the health of your implants and address any issues promptly.

Avoid smoking:

Smoking can increase the risk of implant failure and infection. If you smoke, consider quitting or reducing your tobacco use to improve the success rate of your implants.

Follow post-operative instructions:

After implant surgery, follow your dentist's post-operative instructions carefully to promote proper healing and reduce the risk of complications.

Protect your implants:

Avoid chewing on hard objects such as ice, pens, or hard candies, as this can damage the implant or surrounding tissues.


Infections can occur in dental implants, but with proper care and maintenance, the risk can be minimized. If you suspect that your dental implant is infected, don't hesitate to seek professional help. Prompt treatment is crucial for preserving the health and integrity of your implant. Remember to prioritize good oral hygiene and regular dental visits to keep your implants in top condition.

For more information on dental implants and oral health, visit GargdMD and schedule a consultation with an experienced dental professional. Your smile deserves the best care possible!

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