Ordinarily Dick Van Dyke tweeting about headaches wouldn’t be the source of a half dozen news articles, but recent concerns over the potential side effects of titanium dental implants have set the dental community abuzz with rumors — again!

Many are concerned that dental implants — specifically, titanium dental implants — could cause chronic headaches. Fortunately, there is absolutely no research to back up these claims.

Woman rubbing her forehead with her fingers. While she thinks it might be due to dental implants, it's highly unlikely since there is absolutely no research to back up claims that titanium dental implants could cause chronic headaches

Titanium Safe for Dental Implants

Titanium has been the metal of choice for biomedical uses since the 1950s, and that is not about to change! Titanium is used not just for dental implants, but for everything from joint implants to bone plates, because it is the most biocompatible metal on Earth. The protective oxide film that forms when it is exposed to oxygen protects the metal from the body’s harsh environment, making it resistant to corrosion from bodily fluids.

And what’s more, titanium has the ability to osseointegrate, which means that bone essentially heals to the titanium, much the way that bone heals after a fracture. This makes it especially ideal for dental applications.

What Could be Causing Headaches?

So if it isn’t the dental implants themselves, what could be causing patients to suffer from headaches after getting dental implants?

One possible culprit could be surgical complications. Getting dental implants, like any surgery, comes with the risk of difficulties. For example, sinus cavity damage could cause facial pain or head pain, and nerve damage is another unfortunate possibility. Nerve-related pain is a very rare complication of surgery, but the best way to reduce your risk is to work with a specialist like Dr. Chester Layne, one of the most highly trained implant dentists in Texas. After receiving his DDS in 1981, he recognized the significance of dental implants, and pursued additional training to become specialized.

He also uses the best tools like the Con Beam CT, which gives us such precise images that it allows us to perform a “virtual surgery,” before the surgery. Thus your actual procedure is quicker and more precise with a lower risk of complications.

But more likely than surgical complications is simply that patients who suffer from headaches after getting dental implants are dealing with a misaligned bite or TMJ. Tension headaches and even migraines are common symptoms of TMJ, and treatments for TMJ can, in turn, treat headaches.

All said, complications are extremely rare in dental implant surgeries, and even when they do occur, they’re most likely to only affect the implant itself — not you! Infection like peri-implantitis can put your dental implants at risk; keep an eye out for signs like swelling, bleeding, or persistent pain.

If you would like to learn more about dental implants in Corpus Christi and how cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) can help you achieve the best results, please call (361) 851-8274 or email the Corpus Christi Center for Cosmetic Dentistry today for an appointment.