Dental implants offer people the next best thing to having natural teeth. Implants are durable, permanent and require no additional care than what you already do for proper oral health. However, they are not immune to failure and in certain cases, the implant may be rejected. That’s why Dr. Ahdout wants you to know what you can do to protect your investment in dental implants
Early and Late Implant Failure
Implants can fail at two important stages in the process. The first, early stage is during osseointegration when the body may reject the implant, preventing the jaw from successfully bonding with the titanium post. The second, late-stage is after osseointegration has occurred due to factors including proper oral care, smoking, and teeth grinding.
Follow These 3 Tips to Avoid Implant Failure
Although patients may not have control over early-stage implant rejection, they can follow certain care and lifestyle tips to reduce their chances of late-stage failure.
Observe Proper Oral Care – Although dental implants do not decay as natural teeth can, the health of your gums, jawbone and surrounding teeth can all impact the success of your implant. Gum disease can lead to bone loss, which can cause implant failure, Regular brushing, flossing and examinations by your implant dentist can help prevent cavities and infections that can cause problems.
Avoid Smoking and Excessive Alcohol Use – Both smoking and alcohol use can hinder the healing process due to reduced blood flow and can lead to implant rejection. If you smoke, it is best to quit before your dental implant procedure. It is also advised not to smoke after your implants are placed to ensure their continued success. Likewise, alcohol can have an effect on your healing process and it is advised to refrain from drinking right before and after your implants are placed. After healing, as long as you only drink in moderation your implants should be successful.
Address Teeth Grinding – With continual pressure from grinding the implant post can become loose in the jawbone or fail to integrate with the bone, or the implant restoration may become cracked (which can also happen to your natural teeth). To ensure the success of your implant it is important to address any tendency to grind your teeth. Oftentimes, all that is needed is an appropriate night guard.