“The electromagnetic waves emitted by mobile phones reduce the healing of dental implants by preventing the correct functioning of bone metabolism and increasing localized inflammation”

The increased use of mobile phones has raised some questions about whether their use is safe for patients with dental implants. There was a recent study that aimed to evaluate the consequences of radiation emitted by mobile phones on implant osseointegration (made of titanium) during the healing phase.

The introduction of mobile phone usage as an essential social and professional tool has transformed our current world. Regardless of the socioeconomic level, mobile phones are used by the majority of people of different age groups across the world. There are two reasons why exposure to the radiofrequency (RF) field can have an impact on our health: the first is due to the thermal effects when using mobile phones very close to the body and using them especially during long calls. Secondly, due to the non-thermal cumulative effects of mobile phones and their continued use.

Mobile phone users are exposed to electromagnetic waves (EMFs) at a frequency ranging from 300-3000MHz. Several studies on animals and humans have shown that radiation produced by antennas or mobile phones has adverse effects on our health. There are studies that prove that the radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) created around mobile phones during their use affects regional cerebral blood flow in humans.

A research group (Aldad et al.) demonstrated the association between the use of mobile phones and their effect on neurodevelopment, as well as how these radiations could affect the development of oral mucosa cells, exposed during a period of 1 hour per day over a period of 8 years.

Since mobile phones are used very close to the jawbone and jaw, it is clear that mobile phone radiation affects orofacial tissues and structures.

The implant can pick up electromagnetic radiation emitted by mobile phones, which are harmful and can cause problems with bone healing around the dental implant during the healing phase. This occurs mainly with titanium implants. There was a recent study by Kavyashree et al. which proves the correlation between the negative effect of electromagnetic radiation emitted by mobile phones on the osseointegration of titanium implants. It was histologically proven that in the first healing phase there was more inflammation, less bone maturation and less integration of the implant in the cases of titanium implants which had been exposed to radiation, compared to those that had not been exposed. This is because electromagnetic waves cause the bone to heat, which increases the number of inflammatory cytokines on the site, causing greater inflammation.

Certainly, this negative effect is lower in ceramic implants, although there are still no significant studies, given that ceramics do not have an “antenna effect” compared to titanium implants and, for this reason, do not cause heating of the surrounding bone.

Another reason why exposure to electromagnetic waves from mobile phones is also negative is because it has also been proven that the number of bacteria also increases exponentially when exposed to these radiations, which can easily accelerate the process of the emergence of peri-implantitis.

At White Clinic, we advise our patients to minimise the use of mobile phones during the postoperative period or to limit their use at least during the first 2 weeks of healing, as mobile phones also activate the sympathetic system, which causes greater cellular stress and also affects healing.

*Originally published in Jornal Dentistry.