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Sep 23

Drugs That Treat Depression May Harm Dental Implants

14752060890_5699b19f74_bIncreasingly, health care workers and scientists are learning how connected oral health is to the rest of the body; the growing body of research on the correlation between heart health and gum disease is just one example. Now a new study has shown a connection between medication and dental implants.

New study examines the SSRI/dental implant relationship

SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) are a common medication used to treat depression and anxiety. Recently, the International and American Associations for Dental Research completed a study examining the relationship between SSRIs and osseointegrated (bone integrated) dental implants.

Researchers report a connection between SSRIs and implant failure

The study’s results indicated an increased risk of tooth implant failure in dental patients who took SSRIs: 10.6 percent in SSRI users compared to 4.6 percent failure in non-SSRI users. Because SSRIs are known to reduce bone formation, researchers believe they compromise the integrity of implants, for whom strong bones are integral to success.

The study followed 490 patients with a cumulative total of 916 implants, doing a follow-up analysis at anywhere from three to 67 months following dental implant surgery. Although its conclusions show a significant difference in the rate of implant success correlated with SSRI use, it did not account for some variables, including smoking, bone augmentation, and small-diameter implants.

The research may assist patients like you

Some common SSRIs are Zoloft, Lexapro, Celexa, and Paxil– just to name a few– but determining if your current medication might impact dental work (or any aspect of your health) is the job of your doctor. If you are currently taking a SSRI or believe you may be, our doctors at Arbor Dental Group want to work together with your primary care or mental health physician to make sure you’re getting the best care for your unique set of circumstances.

Arbor Dental Group is part of your healthcare team, which may include doctors, psychiatrists, nurses, and many more professionals. Our job is to work in concert with each other to make sure each part of the team benefits the whole– you!

Photo Credit: John Twohig Photography via Compfight cc

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