What are the Signs of Peri-Implantitis? Complete Guidance


What are the Signs of Peri-Implantitis? Complete Guidance

Dental implants are a fantastic solution for replacing missing teeth. They look and function like natural teeth. However, like natural teeth, they can develop problems. One such issue is peri-implantitis. This condition affects the tissues around the implant. It can cause serious problems if not treated promptly. In this article, we will discuss what peri-implantitis is, its signs, and how you can prevent it.

What is Peri-Implantitis?

Peri-implantitis is an inflammation. It affects the tissues around Dental implants. It starts when bacteria build up around the implant’s base. This buildup causes the gum tissue to become inflamed. If untreated, this inflammation can spread to the bone supporting the implant. This leads to its deterioration and, eventually, implant failure.

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Peri-Implant Mucositis vs. Peri-Implantitis

Peri-implant diseases come in two forms: peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis. Peri-implant mucositis is an early stage. In it, inflammation affects only the soft tissues around the implant. There is no bone loss. It is comparable to gingivitis and is reversible if caught early. Peri-implantitis involves soft tissue inflammation and bone loss. It needs more intensive treatment.

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Common Signs of Peri-Implantitis

Swollen or Red Gums

One of the first signs of peri-implantitis is red or swollen gums. They are around the implant. This occurs as the body responds to the bacterial infection, causing inflammation. If you notice your gums are persistently swollen or red, it is essential to consult your dentist.

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Bleeding Gums

Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing around the implant can indicate peri-implantitis. This is similar to the symptoms of gum disease. Healthy gums should not bleed easily, so any bleeding should be taken seriously.

Pus or Discharge

The presence of pus or a foul taste in your mouth can be a clear sign of infection. Pus at the implant site shows that the body is fighting bacteria. It needs prompt care from a dentist.

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Pain or Tenderness

Pain or tenderness around the implant can also signify peri-implantitis. This discomfort might increase when biting or chewing. Any persistent pain around your dental implants should be evaluated by a dentist.

Loose Implant

A dental implant should feel secure, just like a natural tooth. If your implant starts to feel loose, it could be a sign that the supporting bone is deteriorating due to peri-implantitis. This is a serious symptom that requires prompt dental intervention.

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Bad Breath

Chronic bad breath, or halitosis, can result from bacterial infections around the implant. If your breath smells bad despite good oral hygiene, it could be due to peri-implantitis.

Bone Loss

In advanced cases, peri-implantitis causes bone loss around the implant. This can often be detected only through dental X-rays. Regular dental check-ups are crucial to catch such issues early.

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Preventing Peri-Implantitis

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

The most effective way to prevent peri-implantitis is to maintain excellent oral hygiene. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily. Use an antibacterial mouthwash to reduce plaque buildup.

Regular Dental Check-Ups

Regular visits to the dentist are essential for monitoring the health of your dental implants. Professional cleanings can remove plaque and tartar that regular brushing and flossing miss.

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Avoid Smoking

Smoking is a significant risk factor for peri-implantitis. It reduces blood flow to the gums. This hinders healing and makes infections more likely. Quitting smoking can significantly reduce your risk of developing peri-implantitis.

Control Health Conditions

Managing systemic health conditions like diabetes is crucial. Poorly controlled diabetes can slow healing. It can also raise the risk of infections, including peri-implantitis.

Treatment Options for Peri-Implantitis

Mechanical Debridement

In mechanical debridement, professionals remove plaque and tartar from around the implant. It helps to reduce bacterial load and inflammation.

Antiseptic Treatments

Antiseptic treatments, such as mouth rinses or gels, are used alongside mechanical debridement. These help to kill bacteria and prevent further plaque buildup.

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Antibiotic Therapy

In more severe cases, antibiotics may be prescribed to target bacterial infections. This is often used in conjunction with other treatments to manage peri-implantitis effectively.

Surgical Treatment

Surgical treatment may be necessary for advanced peri-implantitis. This can involve removing infected tissue. It can also involve bone grafting to restore lost bone. Or, it can involve reshaping the soft tissue around the implant.


Peri-implantitis is a serious condition. It can harm your dental implants. Recognising the signs early and seeking prompt treatment can prevent significant complications. Keep your teeth clean. See your dentist often. Manage health conditions. This will reduce your risk. If you see any signs of peri-implantitis, like swollen gums, bleeding, or a loose implant, tell your dentist immediately. By taking these steps, you can ensure the long-term health and success of your dental implants.

Schedule Your Consultation at Old Town Dental Care

If you suspect you have symptoms of peri-implantitis or want to ensure the long-term health of your dental implants, don’t wait. Schedule a consultation at Old Town Dental Care. Our experienced team will provide a comprehensive assessment and personalised treatment plan to keep your smile healthy and bright. Contact us today to book your appointment and take the first step towards optimal dental health.

Frequently Asked Question

Can peri-implantitis be reversed?

Yes, peri-implantitis can be reversed if detected early. Early treatment can stop the disease. It involves oral hygiene, cleaning, and antimicrobial treatments.

How often should I visit the dentist to prevent peri-implantitis?

You should get regular dental check-ups every six months. You should monitor your dental implants. This will keep them healthy and prevent peri-implantitis.

What foods should I avoid with dental implants?

Avoid hard and sticky foods that can damage your dental implants or get trapped around them, such as hard candies, nuts, and chewy sweets.

Are smokers at higher risk for peri-implantitis?

Yes, smokers are at a higher risk. This is due to reduced blood flow to the gums. It impairs healing and raises the risk of infections around implants.

Can peri-implantitis cause implant failure?

If left untreated, peri-implantitis can lead to significant bone loss and implant failure. Early detection and treatment are crucial to prevent such outcomes.