Studies show that more than 95% of dental implants are successful. Nonetheless, dental implant failure in Pasadena is a possibility in some cases. The best way to avoid this problem is to follow your dentist’s recommendations for maintaining your oral health.
What Causes Dental Implants to Fail
Most cases of implant failure can be traced back to one of these causes:
- Not enough bone to support the structure. An implant is similar to a natural tooth in that it requires a sufficient amount of underlying bone. Certain health problems can cause bones to erode, leading to implant failure.
- A weakened immune system. Some medical conditions can affect your body’s ability to fight off infections. When this happens, implant failure is possible.
- Tobacco, alcohol or illicit drugs. Each of these products can affect your oral health. For example, cigarette smoke contains toxins that damage teeth and irritate gums, making implant failure more likely.
- Poor dental hygiene. Enjoying the most benefit from your implants requires good oral health habits. More on this in a bit.
- Teeth grinding or TMJ. Both conditions can place unnatural stress on your teeth, possibly causing an implant to fail.
Signs of Implant Failure
The most common signs of a failing implant are pain, swelling and a feeling that the implant is coming loose. If you notice any of these symptoms, then you should see your implant dentist in Pasadena right away.
Is it Possible to Save a Failed Implant?
In many cases the answer is “yes.” For example, a surgical graft may be able to replace weak or eroding bone matter, allowing placement of a new implant.
What Can I Do to Ensure My Implant Lasts Over the Long Term?
Implants differ from other forms of treatment in that they actually become part of the user’s body. This occurs through a process called osseointegration. However this same benefit also requires the patient to exercise good oral health care habits. Otherwise the implant can fail just as a natural tooth would. That’s why it’s important to follow these safeguards:
- Brushing at least twice a day using a name-brand toothpaste and toothbrush. Brushing after every meal is even better.
- Flossing at least once a day. Do you find that flossing is uncomfortable? Your dentist can recommend a type of floss that’s right for your teeth.
- Using a mouthwash or dental rinse daily. The best choice is a name-brand product that contains fluoride.
- Limiting sugar consumption. Decay-causing bacteria run on sugar in much the same way that an automobile runs on gasoline. You give them a free fill up every time you overindulge in a sugary treat.
- Eating a nutritious diet that includes fresh fruits and vegetables. Your body needs plenty of protein, vitamins and minerals to keep your teeth and bones healthy.
- Avoiding all tobacco products. Now’s the time to quit.
- Exercising, avoiding stress and getting plenty of sleep. Let your dentist know if you have trouble getting enough rest. You may be suffering from sleep apnea, a serious but treatable condition.
- Seeing your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.
Dental implants in Pasadena are an investment in a better life. Treat them with the care they deserve and chances are good that you’ll be enjoying them for a very long time to come.
About the Author
Dr. Chris Sierra earned his DDS degree from the University of Texas at Houston.
You can reach his office online or by calling (713) 943-2094.