5 Signs of Dental Implant Failure

person holding model of dental implant-dental implant failure

5 Signs of Dental Implant Failure

Dental implants are a popular solution for replacing missing teeth. They prevent bone loss and have a general success rate of 98.6% in patients with sufficient bone at the implant site.

However, that does not mean there are no risks involved. Dental implant failure rates have been reported to be approximately 8% in the upper jaw and 5% in the lower. It is important to keep in mind that oral hygiene and preexisting health conditions, as well as certain medications, can all affect the success of a dental implant.

At Prescott Dentistry in Arizona, our team of experts can take care of many of your implant needs right here in our office. Our goal is to make sure all of our patients receive state-of-the-art treatment and stay informed about the possible complications.

How Do Dental Implants Work?

Made of either titanium or ceramic, a dental implant is a prosthetic device used to replace the root of a missing tooth. The implant is surgically placed into the jaw, where it fuses to your bone during a process called osseointegration.

A crown or bridge is then attached to the top of the implant, depending on how many teeth are getting replaced. Unlike dentures, dental implants stimulate the jaw bone and facial muscles and can last a lifetime if there are no complications.

What Causes Dental Implant Failure?

There are a number of risk factors and causes of dental implant failure. They can include:

  • Smoking
  • Teeth grinding and clenching
  • Gum disease
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis 
  • Osteoporosis
  • Certain medications

Your dentist will discuss your medical history with you to make sure a dental implant procedure is the right choice. At Prescott Dentistry, our expert team will assess your candidacy for dental implants and determine the perfect treatment plan for your needs.

Five Signs of Dental Implant Failure

If you’ve recently received a dental implant or feel that the procedure is right for you, it is important to understand the signs of implant failure so you can come in right away if you suspect that there’s a problem. Here are the five main symptoms of dental implant failure:

1. Tooth Pain or Discomfort

It is not uncommon to experience some discomfort after receiving a dental implant. Because it is a surgical procedure, some pain during the first few days after treatment is a normal part of the healing process. 

However, if you continue to experience pain long after the procedure, this could be a sign of dental implant failure. The sooner you visit your dentist, the better. Early treatment is the best way to successfully repair problems caused by implant failure.

2. Gum Inflammation

Like any surgery, one of the risks associated with a dental implant procedure is infection. Some mild swelling following treatment is not unusual, but red and inflamed gums are an indication of complications.

Late-stage gum infection is even harder to treat and can lead to serious health problems. If you have red and swollen gums, see your dentist right away to prevent further damage to your health.

3. Difficulty Chewing

The purpose of dental implants is to restore the look and function of your smile. Once your dental implants have healed, they should feel no different than your natural teeth.

If you are experiencing pain when biting down or difficulty chewing food, your implants may be failing. This problem will not solve itself, and will only get worse over time. Schedule a dental appointment as soon as possible to prevent additional complications.

4. Gum Recession

Receding gums could be a sign of periodontal disease, which can lead to peri-implantitis. This disease affects the hard and soft tissue surrounding a dental implant, and can sometimes lead to implant failure. 

If you have implants, take steps to prevent gum recession and always maintain good oral hygiene. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy will significantly decrease your chances of implant failure. 

5. Loose Implants

Successful dental implants should feel just as secure as any of your natural teeth. If one of your implants feels loose or insecure, it is a sure sign that you need to visit the dentist right away.

Unless osseointegration—the fusing of the dental implant to your bone—occurs, the implant will fail. Loose implants can cause damage to your mouth, so never ignore the signs of implant failure.

Dental Implants in Prescott, Arizona

Overall, dental implants are a reliable method for replacing missing teeth, and they have a very high success rate. To find out whether implants are the right option for your oral health needs, visit Dr. Nathan Thompson and Lance German at Prescott Dentistry in Arizona. You can contact us online or call 928-445-1660 to schedule an implant consultation.


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