person talking to dentist about removing a failed dental implant

If you have a dental implant that’s started to feel loose, uncomfortable, or is causing you pain, this may be a sign that it’s failing. Though dental implants have a success rate of around 95%, that doesn’t mean that failure is impossible. If this ever happens to you, it’s important to visit your dentist as soon as possible to receive treatment. So you know what to expect, read on to learn about removing a failed implant.

What Causes Dental Implant Failure?

During the dental implant procedure, these titanium posts are inserted through the gums and into the jawbone. Over the next four to six months, they will fuse with the jaw through a process called osseointegration. A few things that may interrupt osseointegration and cause your implants  to fail include:

  • Poor oral hygiene – If you don’t brush twice per day and floss every night, you may develop an infection of the gums called peri-implantitis. This infection is similar to periodontal disease and can cause the gums and bone supporting an implant to deteriorate.
  • Weak jawbone – For those who have had a tooth missing for a while, they may have suffered bone loss due to lack of stimulation. This can weaken the jawbone and may make it difficult for implants to be successfully placed.
  • Tobacco use – Smoking sharply raises your risk of failed osseointegration. In fact, one in five people who smoke cigarettes and have dental implants experience implant failure.
  • Medical conditions – Medical conditions like osteoporosis and autoimmune issues impair one’s ability to heal. This can prevent successful osseointegration and lead to implant failure.

How Your Dentist Removes a Failed Dental Implant

Your dentist will try to preserve as much bone structure as possible while removing a failed implant. One common way of removing a dental implant involves an instrument called a trough bur. This lets your dentist cut along the edge of the implant into a small section of the jawbone. They will do this until it’s detached enough to pull it loose. Your dentist will use numb the area and administer a local anesthetic before they beginning treatment to make sure you remain comfortable throughout the procedure.

How Soon Can You Get a New Dental Implant?

The amount of time you’ll need to wait to get a new dental implant after having one removed depends on the individual. Before a new implant is placed, any oral health issues you have will need to be treated. This is because conditions like gum disease can lead to complications with your implants. Your jawbone also needs to be healthy and strong enough to support implants. Your dentist may also recommend a bone graft if the jawbone needs to be strengthened. You will need to wait a few months after having a failed dental implant removed to make sure that the surgical spot has fully healed.

Dental implant failure is uncommon, but it can still happen from time to time. If this happens to you, speak with you dentist as soon as possible about removing a failed implant. This will allow them to promptly remove the implant so you can be on your way to regaining a healthy smile!

About the Practice

LakeView Family Dental has three convenient locations in Southfield, Keego Harbor, and West Bloomfield. If you have a failed dental implant that needs to be removed, they can do so promptly to prevent further complications and get your smile back on the right track. To set up an appointment or for more information removing a failed implant, call their Keego Harbor office at (248) 683-2323, their West Bloomfield office at (248) 363-3304, their Southfield office at (248) 356-8790, or visit their website.