How To Recognize Problems With Established Dental Implants

Dentist Blog

Dental implants provide a tooth replacement option that is low-maintenance, realistic looking and feeling, and suitable for a single tooth or for multiple teeth. Once installed and healed into place, implants only require the same care as your natural teeth – brushing, flossing, and routine cleanings. Since cavities and tooth infections are no longer a concern, you may ignore the symptoms of an impending issue. Problems aren't common and most of them are easily remedied, but you need to be able to recognize the symptoms.

Inflamed Gums

Gum inflammation, such as gingivitis or periodontal disease, is one of the more common issues with established implants. This is because plaque and bacteria can still build up on the crown attached to the implant post. The bacteria can then invade the gums and even begin eating away at the bone that holds the post in place. The simplest way to avoid a gum infection, beyond daily dental hygiene, is to get regular cleanings from your dentist. Not only will this prevent plaque buildup, it also ensures any infections are caught and treated before they have a chance to damage the bone. Too much missing bone can make the post attachment unsteady, which means the implant can be lost.

Natural Tooth Damage

A skilled implant surgeon is usually able to place an implant post, and later the crown, in your jaw without damaging any natural teeth in your mouth. Occasionally, though, a tight fit may cause what at first appears to be minor damage to the enamel of a neighboring tooth. If you are feeling sensitivity in teeth neighboring the implant site, see your dentist. They may be able to place a cap or veneer on the damaged natural tooth if the enamel is exceptionally thin. At the very least, this tooth may need to be monitored more closely to make sure decay doesn't affect the weakened surface.


Although rare, the body will sometimes recognize an implant post as a foreign object and will push it out of the jaw. This usually happens soon after installation, but it could happen later. If the implant posts feels loose, or if the implant seems to be moving or shifting to a new spot in the jaw, see your dentist to make sure the implant isn't being rejected.

Loose Crowns

While it is rare for the post to loosen or become rejected, the crown is more likely to suffer damage. The crown is the tooth-like portion attached to the top of the post. Usually a cap is screwed tightly to the top of the post. Then, a carefully crafted crown is bonded to this cap. If the crown loosens, your dentist may need to remove the entire crown to access the cap. This usually results in a broken crown, so a new crown will need to be crafted and placed upon the tightened crown.


9 November 2015

Give Yourself the Gift of a Beautiful Smile

If you are someone who hesitates to open your mouth when you smile because you are embarrassed about your teeth, you should know that there are a number of cosmetic techniques that can give you a beautiful smile you will be proud to show to the world. As a cosmetic dentist, I have seen many clients transform their lives simply by fixing their smiles. This blog is meant to encourage people to find out about the possibilities in cosmetic dentistry so they can feel good about their smiles. A beautiful, confident smile really can change your life. I would love to show you how.