Care and Maintenance of Dental Implants

Dental implants are a natural-looking and functioning replacement for lost teeth, and are the most advanced dental restoration available to replace missing teeth. Dental implants are considered permanent restorations, but like your natural teeth they are susceptible to wear, staining, and damage. Caring for your dental implants is an important step to keeping your surrounding jaw, gums, and teeth healthy.

If Your Implant is Damaged

You may experience damage to your dental implant through a variety of ways, including chewing on ice or hard candy, using your teeth as a tool to open or tear objects, or in an accident. Your dental implants may become:

Stained
Chipped
Broken
Loose

Because dental porcelain does not respond to tooth whitening products, if your dental implant is stained it may be difficult to whiten it inexpensively. The crown may be whitened with dental bonding or, if necessary, replaced.

A chipped, cracked, or broken dental implant is more difficult to repair. If the damage is minor, dental bonding may be used to build up the damaged area or smooth over a crack, but dental bonding is not as strong as dental porcelain and eventually the repair may have to be repeated or the porcelain crown replaced.

If your dental implant becomes loose, one of two possibilities may have occurred:

Your dental crown may be damaged
Your titanium implant may have shifted.

If your porcelain crown has been damaged, it may be replaced relatively easily. However, if your titanium post has shifted it may be an indication that proper osseointegration did not take place, and your jaw bone may not be capable of completely supporting a dental implant. The likelihood of your titanium implant coming loose once it has become properly supported by your jaw bone is extremely unlikely, and is more likely to occur through direct damage to your jaw bone than through any effects of regular use, such as eating or chewing gum.

Seeking Immediate Care

While some of these possibilities pose much less of a threat to your overall oral health than others, you should still have even minor damage to a dental implant repaired as soon as possible. A jagged edge or weakened crown may wear against adjacent teeth and cause you problems which will become more expensive to have repaired over time.

If your dental implant has suffered damage and you are in the Calgary, Alberta area, please visit the website of implant dentist Dr. Steven Cload today to learn more about how to care for and maintain dental implants.