Avoid These Top Causes of Dental Implant Failure By Jin Ha Joung on July 29, 2019

Middle molar shows dental implant below gum surfacePatients who undergo dental implant surgery benefit from a safe and effective treatment for tooth loss. During your visit to our office, one of our doctors will explain how dental implants should be cared for and which habits should be avoided.

Maintaining good oral health and avoiding bad habits can ensure that your implants last a lifetime. At Ridgewood Dental Associates, we treat individual patients with personalized care. Here, we discuss how our Ridgewood, NJ, patients can avoid the top causes of dental implant failure.

Risk Factors for Dental Implant Failure

During the days, weeks, and months following dental implant placement, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene to ensure that your implants fully heal. After your implant surgery, full recovery can take three to six months.

Tobacco Use

Tobacco is a leading risk factor for implant failure. The National Institutes of Health notes that tobacco use has a negative effect on almost all forms of oral surgery. Numerous studies have found that smoking slows the rate of healing after surgery.

Regular users of tobacco tend to have lower jawbone density than non-smokers. Healthy jawbone density is an important factor for receiving dental implants.

If you do use tobacco products, we recommend ceasing tobacco use in the week before surgery and throughout the recovery.

Medical Conditions and Other Risk Factors

Uncontrolled diabetes can impede the natural healing process, known as osseointegration. Other risk factors include:

  • Certain bone diseases
  • Deficiencies in the immune system
  • Severe systemic illnesses
  • Drug abuse

Poor Oral Hygiene

Infections and bone loss are the two leading causes of implant loss. Patients have an active role to play in preventing implant failure.

Patients should take extra care to clean their teeth and gums in the hours before implant placement at our Ridgewood dental practice. You will be given recovery guidelines that detail how to clean your teeth in the hours and days after surgery. Be sure to avoid aggravating the implant area until the incisions heal.

In the days, weeks, and months following surgery, patients should brush twice a day while flossing daily and using a therapeutic mouthwash to prevent bacteria from building up in the mouth and possibly infecting the area near your dental implant. Regular visits to our Ridgewood dental office for cleanings and exams will also be an important means of preventing infections or other dental problems.

While infections are rare, patients should know the signs of a potential infection, which can include:

  • The onset of severe or significant pain near the implant area
  • Bleeding near the surgery site
  • Loosening of the implant post
  • Swelling near the implant area after the initial healing

Final Tips

Eating a nutritious and plant-based diet can promote healing while lowering your risk for tooth decay and gum disease. You will also want to avoid activities that may lead to accidental trauma to your implant. While your dental implant is made from durable materials, the jawbone and gum tissue that hold the implant in place can still become infected. Maintaining healthy gums, teeth, and jawbone tissue can ensure that your implant posts fully fuse to your jawbone and last a lifetime.

Regain Natural Tooth Function with Dental Implants

Many of our patients report that dental implants look, feel, and function like natural teeth. If you are missing one or more teeth, our office has several restorative treatments that address missing teeth.

If you are ready to explore the benefits of dental implants, we welcome you to contact our office online or to call us in Ridgewood at (201) 652-2474.

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