Will Dental Implants Affect MRI Procedures?

Will Dental Implants Affect MRI Procedures?
Author: Espire Dental Posted: February 15th, 2023 Category:

Are you wondering whether your dental implant will interfere with your MRI procedure? Read on to learn why you have nothing to worry about.

Suppose your doctor has recommended you have an MRI exam, but you received a dental implant, and part of the implant is made of metal. Metals and MRIs don’t mix, right? So should you not undergo the MRI exam because the dental implant may affect the procedure?

By all means, keep the appointment for the imaging test! Studies show the chance of the implant affecting the MRI is slim. And you don’t want to skip a test that could diagnose a serious condition for which you can get treatment. Yes, you can safely go through the exam with your dental implant. But let’s learn more about the test and why a dental implant won’t interfere with it.

What’s an MRI?

An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) test uses radio waves, a magnet, and a contrasting dye to produce pictures of tissues, organs, and bones on a computer screen. 

The images allow the doctor to see tumors and assess your heart and brain health, among other conditions. The non-invasive test can diagnose diseases or musculoskeletal injuries and evaluate how well follow-up treatment works. Unlike a CAT scan or radiograph, an MRI doesn’t expose the patient to radiation. But is it safe for dental implants?

Yes, MRIs and dental implants can go together!

The piece of dental implant implanted into the jawbone is made of either zirconia, titanium alloys, or polymers. These materials are considered biocompatible, so the body will not reject them. Instead, bone will fuse around the implant, giving it a secure hold in the jaw.

Because of the strong magnet used in MRI, a ferromagnetic material such as iron can attach to it and disrupt the readings. Therefore, before the test, you must take off any watches, jewelry, or clothing with metallic items. Hearing aids fall into that category, too. But dental implants do not. Titanium and zirconia are non-ferromagnetic, so they are not magnetic and cannot be drawn into the machine’s magnetic field. One study concluded dental implants made of titanium posed no danger to patients undergoing an MRI procedure. 

However, even if the risk is low, any bit of metal could interfere with the test. Before undergoing an MRI exam, tell your doctor or the technician if you have implants, metal fillings, bridges, dentures, or crowns to be on the safe side. 

Thinking about a dental implant?

Schedule an appointment at Espire’s Mission Valley, California, location today! Our highly trained dentists have performed hundreds of dental implant procedures. Don’t live near our Mission Valley, CA, office? Find one of our other locations near you.

Mission Valley, CA
8989 Rio San Diego Drive
Suite 170
San Diego, CA 92108