Can Dental Implants Improve Your Sense Of Taste?

The different parts of a dental implant are completely tasteless. The titanium implant is fully submerged in your jawbone, and the implant's prosthetic tooth (typically made of ceramic) is the only part that makes contact with your tastebuds. Your taste buds won't register anything though, since that dental ceramic is completely without a detectable flavor. So why do some patients report a change to their sense of taste after dental implant surgery? 

For the Better

A change can be for the worst or the better. Happily, any change to a patient's sense of taste after having dental implants fitted is a positive one—especially if a deteriorated tooth was removed to create space for the implant and its prosthetic tooth. This is often the preferred treatment when attempts to save the damaged tooth are unlikely to be successful.

Oral Bacteria

Tooth decay tastes unpleasant. The oral bacteria that have colonized the tooth and are contributing to its corrosion are largely to blame. This bacteria doesn't expel carbon dioxide like many organisms, but produces a sulfuric gas, which contributes to bad breath and an unpleasant taste in your mouth. The smell of sulfur is described as being like rotten eggs, so its taste and smell aren't welcome. 


The foul taste in your mouth caused by a single decayed tooth is unlikely to be overwhelming, although it will be chronic, and cannot be shifted by the usual means (brushing your teeth, breath fresheners). This foul taste will be immediately eliminated when the tooth is extracted as part of your dental implant surgery. 

Prosthetic Tooth

The extraction of your decayed tooth is only the first stage of the process. Immediate placement of the prosthetic tooth has many advantages but is only possible when your jawbone is in excellent health. Your dentist will let you know the required number of sessions, but some patients may receive their permanent prosthetic tooth in the same appointment as their implant surgery. Other patients need time to allow the implant to stabilize before it can take the bite pressure that the tooth will experience.

In any event, eating is different when you have a full set of functional teeth. As such, you might find that your food tastes better when you're able to tear it into manageable chunks and chew it properly. This simple process can be disrupted when one or more teeth are missing, and should greatly improve your enjoyment of food.

To learn more about dental implants, contact a professional dentist in your area.