Why Do Dental Implants Fail?
There are two basic types of dental implant failure: Short-term implant failure and long-term implant failure.
Short-term implant failure denotes implants that fail within a few months of being placed. Usually, this happens because the implants failed to heal properly in the first place or because there was insufficient jawbone in which to anchor the implants.
Long-term implant failure involves implants that fail after being in place for a year or more. Typically, long-term implant failure can be linked with periodontal disease, tooth decay, general dental neglect, or a traumatic accident.
What To Do About Failed Implants
If you experience implant failure for any reason, reach out to your oral surgeon as promptly as possible.
In some cases, the implant may simply be chipped or slightly cracked. When this happens, it may be possible to repair the implant via the application of bonding material. For this non-surgical procedure, your oral surgeon may refer you to a cosmetic dentist.
More often, dental implants may need to be replaced. Implant replacement is often done in conjunction with a bone graft, which provides a steady foundation and increases the probability of the implant healing properly in place. Most of the time, your oral surgeon will be able to do the bone graft and the implant replacement at the same time, meaning you will only need one procedure instead of multiple procedures.
How To Prevent Implant Failure
Implant failure cannot always be prevented, but there are steps you can take to minimize your risk. Make sure you seek an experienced oral surgeon who will take the time to qualify you for surgery, and ask whether you need bone grafting to ensure the implant is fully supported.
Following your implant placement, be sure to carefully follow all aftercare guidelines and be vigilant about oral hygiene, brushing, flossing, and seeing your dentist regularly.