Can I get dental implants if I’m on a blood thinner?

Dental implants are an excellent option for replacing missing teeth, but patients who are on blood thinners, which are also known as anticoagulants, may wonder if they are eligible candidates for this technology. In fact, this is a common question in Plano implant dentistry practices.

The short answer is yes, but these patients may have different experiences as they recover from the implant placement procedure, due to the medication.

Nearly all dental procedures, including implants, involve some level of bleeding, even if it is minimal. Because blood thinners reduce clotting, dental patients who are taking them may bleed more than normal when undergoing a procedure like an implant placement. Blood thinners can also complicate the healing process, which needs the blood to clot normally in order be successful.

Also, anticoagulants may have some negative interactions with some of the other medicines prescribed by the dentist, such as painkillers and antibiotics, following a surgical procedure.

Therefore, to accommodate the healing process, patients who are on anticoagulants may temporarily need to stop taking the medications before dental surgery. However, some patients may be able to continue with their medication regimens throughout the implant placement process. Your dentist likely will consult with your physician to get further information on your specific condition and your overall health when making the decision whether to discontinue blood thinners.

If you are able to keep taking your anticoagulant medication, the dentist may use special suturing or stitching techniques to minimize ongoing bleeding as well.

Be sure to inform your implant dentist of all of your medications, including any blood thinners, to ensure that the surgery team can properly plan for your procedure. Prior to the implant procedure, you should also schedule an appointment with your primary care physician to discuss any concerns about your medications. If you do go off the blood thinners for a short time, you’ll also need to be extra vigilant in looking for signs of a potentially dangerous blood clot.

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