3 Health Conditions That May Complicate Healing After Dental Implants

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Getting dental implants can dramatically improve your appearance, and while the procedure can be lengthy, the outcome is usually worth it. Although generally considered safe and well-tolerated by most patients, the dental implant procedure may be complicated by a number of factors. Here are three health conditions that may lead to problems with your implants:


Diabetes, especially when long-standing or poorly controlled, can lead to venous insufficiency or vascular problems. The dental implant procedure involves the extraction of your natural teeth and the implantation of hardware.

It is essential that your blood vessels are healthy enough so that your extraction and implantation sites are continually nourished with oxygen-rich blood to promote healing. When your blood vessels become damaged as a result of diabetes, your circulation becomes impaired and healing may slow.

Damaged blood vessels from diabetes may also lead to a post-procedure infection. Taking your diabetes medications, following your therapeutic diet, getting daily exercise and not smoking can help keep your blood glucose levels within normal limits, keep your blood vessels healthy and help prevent complications related to your dental implant procedure.


Osteoporosis refers to a condition which causes your bones to weaken and become brittle. It is generally the result of declining estrogen levels that occur during the menopausal years, and is largely a disease of older women.

Men can also get osteoporosis, and while this condition often affects the bones of the spine, it can cause reduced bone density in every bone in the body, including those of the jaw. Because of this, you may experience problems with pain and stiffness after you get your implants.

Osteoporosis may also raise the risk of a jaw fracture during or after implantation surgery. Medications known as bisphosphonates can help slow the progression of osteoporosis, as can taking calcium and vitamin D supplements.


Periodontitis is a severe form of gum disease, and it not only can cause swollen, bleeding gums, it can also lead to bone destruction of the structures that support your teeth. If you have periodontitis, your dentist may recommend treatment before you begin your implant procedure.

Treatment for periodontitis may include taking a course of oral antibiotics and scaling and root planing, which helps remove tarter from underneath your gum line and the roots of your teeth. Getting dental implants with active periodontitis can lead to a severe infection, bone damage and distortion of your gum tissue.

If you have any of the above conditions, talk to both your oral surgeon, such as Christopher L. Schneider, DMD, and your primary physician prior to getting your dental implants. When these health issues are recognized and treated early, you are more likely to enjoy an uneventful post-operative recovery after your procedure.