Dental Implant Infections – The Symptoms And Treatments

Following a dental implant, infections are a relatively common problem. Although many patients complete the healing process without any issues, there are some who will experience different degrees of infection. Fortunately, your dentist can help you get through this setback. How will the infection be treated? What can you do to make things a little more comfortable for yourself while the infection is treated? Here, you'll learn about the symptoms and treatments of infected dental implants.


If the implant has become infected, you will feel pain, smell an odor and possibly experience swelling of the gums around the implant. If the infection is really bad, a fever may be present as well.

Treatment within Two Weeks after the Surgery

If the infection occurs within the first two weeks of the implant being placed, your dentist will likely be prescribing an antibiotic. If you take the antibiotic as directed, the infection should be stopped prior to complicating the healing process. In many cases, if the infection is caught and treated this early, there will be no further treatments needed for the infection.

Treatment beyond Two Weeks after the Surgery

If the infection occurs later than two weeks after the surgery, it can be more difficult to get it under control. Once an infection gets bad, the implant crown and the post can come loose and require the crown to be removed and replaced.

Infections that are in the bone around the post will likely cause the post to need to be removed until the infection is treated. There is no doubt when the bone develops an infection because you will be in tremendous pain and the smell and taste that you have in your mouth will be awful. If the infection is not treated properly and quickly, the infection will continue to worsen and put your health at risk.  

Treatment Several Weeks after the Surgery

If you've made it several weeks into the healing process and an infection develops, there could be a gap between the implant post and crown. If a gap is left, bacteria can form in that space and cause inflammation of the tissue around the implant. Typically, this issue can be treated with a round of antibiotics and your dentist adjusting the crown to fill in the gaps.

Tips to Help you Manage the Taste and Smell

As you wait for the antibiotics to kick in and work on killing the infection, you will have to deal with the bad taste and smell coming from the implant. These are a few things you can do to make it less gross for you.

  • Use mouthwash repeatedly through the day.
  • Gently brush your teeth several times a day – just be careful not to irritate the implant area as you brush.
  • Rinse with salt water to relieve pain.

Talk to your dentist immediately if you are experiencing any pain around your implant. He or she will take a look and determine the next course of action. Infections happen - it doesn't mean that you've done anything wrong, it just happens sometimes. Your dentist will fix you right up and get you back to enjoying the food you love and smiling at the people who make you happy.