This page was published on Apr 2, 2016, modified on Jul 23, 2018 by Dr. Rahmani (Implant Dentist) of NYC Dental Implants Center

Destructive Disease That is Similar to Periodontal Disease

Peri-implantitis is a destructive disease that is quite similar to periodontal disease. It can affect the gums and bone surrounding dental implants and without prompt treatment may lead to implant failure.

Treating Peri-Implantitis

The success of treatment for peri-implantitis depends on when the condition is diagnosed. If there is little bone loss around the dental implant then there is a much greater chance it can be saved. The later the treatment begins, the lower the chance of saving the dental implant. If the infection and damage is extensive, it might not be possible to save the dental implant and removal could be the best option. Once the original implant site has healed and is completely healthy, a new dental implant can be inserted.

There are various treatments that can be tried. Dr. Rahmani can provide patients with a full periodontal evaluation to determine the extent of the infection before suggesting the most suitable treatments.

Deep Cleaning the Implants

The area around the infected dental implant can be deep cleaned using special instruments which include a dental laser as the energy helps to sterilize the tissues. This removes the infection, deep cleaning the area without damaging the surface of the dental implant. Afterwards, the area may be flushed with an antiseptic solution and topical antibiotics can be placed. These are time-release microspheres that help to eliminate any bacteria that may migrate from the tissues near to the infected dental implant. If there is any gum disease present around the natural teeth then this must be treated to help avoid the implant from becoming re-infected. Oral antibiotics may also be prescribed and it is important to complete the course.

Repairing Damage Caused by Peri-Implantitis

A follow-up examination will be scheduled for a few weeks later, at which stage your dental implant will be re-evaluated to decide on the next course of action. Often with peri-implantitis it is necessary to repair and regenerate missing bone and gum tissue that has been destroyed by the infection. Additional procedures may include guided bone and tissue regeneration or bone grafting to help anchor the implant more firmly into the jawbone.

Preventing Re-Infection

Good oral hygiene is even more important for anyone who has had peri-implantitis, as dental implants affected by this condition are more susceptible to re-infection. Using an electronic toothbrush can help improve daily plaque removal and flossing is essential. You might also be advised to use an anti-bacterial mouth rinse.