When a tooth is lost, so is the function of the mouth, as well as confidence in the appearance. Should the missing tooth not be addressed, bone loss and damage to surrounding structures will occur. Luckily with the use of dental implant restoration, Dr. John Paul Gallardo and Dr. William P. Lamas can safely restore an aesthetically pleasing smile and improve the full function of the jaw/mouth. Today’s cutting-edge dental implants are strongly designed to endure the test of time.
Dental Implant Problems and the Causes of Failure
While more than 95% off all dental implants provide positive results, there are a few situations that may require further dental work or repair. Many times, problems with dental implants are minor and therefore are easily corrected. However, if a problem does occur with any dental implant, it is important that patients seek assistance immediately, so that proper care can be received.
Failed Implant to Bone Bond:
Like with any surgery, there are a variety of factors, both internal and external, that can cause complications to occur once a dental implant is in place. The most common issues occur when the bone does not grow and fuse properly with the dental implant. This situation, known as failed osseointegration, will cause the connection between the implant and the jaw to become weak. When failure to fuse with the natural bone occurs, chewing can be difficult, and the implant may become uncomfortable, loose, or even fall out completely. Failed osseointegration can be caused by poorly positioned implants that result in excessive loading (allowing too much pressure to be placed on the implant), bones without sufficient density, infection, and trauma.
Insufficient Bone Density:
Oral bisphosphonates, or medications prescribed for osteoporosis, can get in the way of properly bone healing after an implant is placed. Patients taking Fosamax, Actonel, or Boniva should let their dentist know prior to receiving a dental implant.
Peri-implantitis is an infectious disease that can lead to an inflammation of the gum and bone surrounding a dental implant. The inflammatory process causes bone to deteriorate, and the dental implant may become loose. Issues that can lead to Peri-implantitis include smoking, diabetes, a poor immune system, thin gums or exposed bones, and poor dental hygiene.
For antibiotic therapy to save the dental implant, the infection must be caught early, but unfortunately, Peri-implantitis may evolve unnoticed and undetected for months or years. In this situation, Dr. Lamas and Dr. Gallardo have multitude of techniques, including a laser, to improve the health of the implant without the use of undergoing surgery.
Signs of Peri-implantitis Include:
- Abnormal bleeding at the gumline
- Gum very red or purple/blue (gum irritation or inflammation)
- Pus coming from gumline near the implant
- Bad taste in the mouth
- Looseness to the crown or implant
- Gum pain
- Bad breath
Nerve or Tissue Damage:
Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas use a variety of tools, including digital radiography and CT scans to ensure a dental implant is safely placed. Implants that are not properly placed can harm normal anatomic structure such as nerves, blood vessels, sinus cavities, etc. While some bleeding and pain are common after a dental implant is placed, if they last longer than a few days, patients should contact a periodontist.
When replacing upper teeth with implants, there is a slight risk to perforating the sinus cavities. Should an implant protrude significantly without the proper repair during surgery into the sinus cavity, inflammation and infection can occur. As a preventative measure, Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas may suggest a bone graft to create the barrier necessary in between the implant and the sinus cavity. If a sinus problem does occur, there are methods to correct the problem during surgery.
Problems due to foreign body rejection or allergic reactions are rarely seen with modern dental implants. Bending and breaking are also uncommon thanks to strong materials and innovative design. Trauma, external force, and long-term pressure from years of teeth grinding may cause an implant to crack or fracture, however. These issues are generally easy to address by Dr. Gallardo or Dr. Lamas.
What happens if an implant fails?
If you suspect that your dental implant is not healing properly, not tightly attached to your jaw bone, or is showing any signs of failure such as looseness or swelling, it is important that you contact your periodontist right away. Many times, there are simple steps that can be taken to save the implant and restore a healthy mouth. Using tissue grafts, Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas can successfully build up the area around the implant. Antibiotic therapy and frequent in-office cleaning with antibacterial solutions can be used to treat infections and encourage healing.
In the even that an implant cannot be repaired, Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas will extract the tooth. Once the implant has been successfully removed, the site can be thoroughly cleaned and debrided. A bone graft may be needed to ensure the surrounding bone does not deteriorate. This additional bone will also strengthen the foundation, creating a higher chance for replacement implant success. Once adequate bone growth is seen, a new implant can be placed.
Miami’s Dental Implant Repair Office:
Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas both have more than 15 years of experience with dental implant treatments, restoration and repair. If you have noticed a loose or damaged dental implant, schedule an appointment in their Miami dental office as soon as possible. Please contact Gallardo & Lamas Periodontics and Implant Dentistry at 305.447.1447. Patients not in the immediate Miami area can talk to a patient coordinator for further assistance in setting up a consultation. The professionals at our office are always here to answer any concerns or questions that may arise.
Dental Implant Repair FAQ:
What is dental implant repair?
Dental implants that become loose or fall out require immediate attention. Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas can repair failed dental implants to ensure healthy bone, functional teeth, and an aesthetically pleasing smile.
How successful are dental implants?
More than 95% of all primary dental implants are successful. However, as with any surgery, there are times when implants fail and require a corrective procedure.
What are the causes of dental implant failure?
The most common reasons for dental implant failure include poor bone integration, infection, and trauma. Nerve/tissue damage and sinus problems can also require dental implant repair.
Am I a good candidate for implant repair?
Almost anyone who is experiencing loose dental implants, or has an implant that has fallen out, is a candidate for repair. Patients noting any problems with their dental implants should have their teeth assessed by an experienced Periodontist.
Is dental implant restoration or repair painful?
While dental implant restoration or repair may be mildly uncomfortable, Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas ensure their patients will be comfortable during treatment using innovative topical and local anesthetics. The surgeons will prescribe the necessary pain medications for a comfortable healing process following treatment, as well.