Dental implants are inserted directly into the jaw. Once placed, implants undergo a process called osseointegration, during which osteoblasts and connective tissue secure to tiny holes on their surface, holding them fast in place. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option that addresses a tooth’s missing root.
By replacing a tooth’s missing root, dental implants work to prevent structural changes to the jaw. Dentures and dental bridges, both of which rest above the gums, cannot prevent these changes and will, over time, need to be adjusted as bone in the jaw shrinks and collapses.
In addition to preserving jaw structure, dental implants are very unlikely to come loose or fall out. In fact, if you care for your implants as instructed, they should last for a lifetime. However, there are some things that are beyond your control that may necessitate dental implant removal.
Dental Implant Failure
A majority of dental implant procedures are successful. Those that are not often fail to integrate into bone in the first place. Reasons an implant may fail within the first few months include:
- Allergic reaction
- Rejection of foreign object in the body
- Lack of blood supply
- Poor health
- Certain autoimmune diseases
Early dental implant failure may also result from poor technique when placed. Dentists who overload an implant in an effort to speed results or who damage nerve or tissue while placing the implant may set a patient up for failure. This is just one reason your choice of implant dentist is so very important.
Dental implants take around six months to fully secure into the jaw. After this point, failure is extremely rare. Late stage dental implant failure may be a result of:
- Tooth grinding
- Poor oral hygiene
- Smoking and tobacco use
Radiation from cancer treatment, bone loss, and gum recession may cause an implant to fail as well.
Symptoms of a Failed Dental Implant
Symptoms of a failed dental implant may include:
- Pain and/or swelling around an implant
- Red and/or tender gum tissue
- A loose or shifting implant
- Difficulties chewing and/or biting
If you have dental implants and are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is a good idea to get in touch with Dr. Tenney. Through a hands-on evaluation, Dr. Tenney can determine if treatment is possible or if the implant will need to be removed entirely.
Dental Implant Removal
There are several methods for removing dental implants depending on the point at which they fail. While it may be easier to remove implants before they have integrated into bone, it is entirely possible to safely and effectively remove them once they have been secured as well. During your initial consultation, Dr. Tenney can discuss dental implant removal methods to help you understand your options and choose the one that will be best for your needs.
Please call Desert Smiles at 602-978-1790 to schedule a consultation today. Located in Glendale, we welcome patients from Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Chandler, and all surrounding areas.