How to Deal with a Loose Dental Implant
Do you have a loose dental implant?
Most people never have a problem with their implants. In fact, when these permanent replacement teeth are placed by an experienced oral surgeon, the success rate is almost 98 percent.
But just like your natural teeth, implants can become loose under certain conditions. If that happens, it’s important that you contact us as soon as possible so we can prevent a small problem from becoming a bigger challenge.
Tightening a Loose Dental Implant Abutment
Implants are supported by (and attached to) an abutment, a titanium cylinder that connects the replacement tooth root to the crown.
If your dental implant feels a little wobbly, the problem could be a loose abutment connection. This can happen as a result of excessive stress on the teeth from some type of trauma, such as a fall, car accident or hard blow to the face. More commonly, however, implants loosen due to bruxism, or tooth grinding.
A loose abutment can usually be fixed without compromising the integrity of the implant. In some cases, the oral surgeon can remove the crown and tighten the connection. When that isn’t possible, the abutment can be accessed and stabilized through a tiny hole drilled through the crown.
Treatment for a Loose Dental Implant Post
For implant surgery to be successful, the replacement tooth root needs to bond with the bone tissue in the jaw — a process called osseointegration.
Osseointegration can fail if complications arise during the healing process.
Bacterial infections can set in the gum tissues around the implant, preventing osseointegration from taking place. Or the titanium tooth root may not bond with the jawbone due to other factors, such as smoking or inadequate oral health care habits. Chronic medical conditions, including diabetes and Crohn’s disease, may also play a part in this phenomenon.
Regardless of the cause, when osseointegration fails, the loose implant must be removed and replaced. Before a second implant surgery can be scheduled, however, a bone graft is typically necessary to fully support a new replacement tooth root.
A Prompt Oral Surgeon Exam is Essential for a Wobbly Implant
Your implants should fit and feel just like your natural teeth. If yours don’t, schedule an appointment with one of our oral surgeons immediately.
Looseness in a dental implant won’t correct itself, so waiting to see if the problem goes away isn’t an option. In fact, if the issue isn’t fixed, you could end up with other potentially more serious oral health care problems.
Leaving a loose implant untreated can lead to damage in the nearby teeth and cause gum irritation. In addition, over time, the instability can lead to damage in the jawbone.
The professional oral surgeons at Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah specialize in implant surgery. Our treatment team works hard to make sure our patients enjoy a positive outcome.
You don’t have to live with missing teeth or a loose dental implant. Contact one of our three convenient Salt Lake City area offices to schedule a consultation today.
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