Last August, I had dental implant surgery. A periodontist placed the implant, and I returned to my regular dentist for a temporary crown. The dentist had difficulty getting the temporary crown on and forced it down. The crown hurt the entire time I had it.
My dentist kept saying everything was okay. He could not see anything wrong. Every time he touched the temporary crown, I felt even more pain, and I think he was afraid to try to remove it. I switched to a new dentist to get the permanent crown because I needed more confidence in my prior dentist. My new dentist says that the implant is loose. I know it is loose due to the trouble with the temporary crown. Can you give me an outside opinion on whether this can be fixed without removing the implant and doing it all over again? Thank you. Demetrius from Ohio
Thank you for your question.
Can a Dentist Save Your Loose Implant?
A skilled implant dentist must take digital X-rays and examine your implant before determining whether they can save or remove it. Sometimes, eliminating infection around an implant or adding bone graft material can save it. If a dentist must remove it, you may require bone grafting and healing time before replacing the implant.
Why Do Dental Implants Loosen?
Reasons that a dental implant may loosen include:
- The crown – The dental crown—not the implant itself—might be loose. If a dentist does not correctly place the crown, pressure can cause it to loosen.
- Poor placement – If a dentist or surgeon places an implant in the wrong location, it can loosen.
- Premature loading – Sometimes, pressure from attaching replacement teeth too soon can loosen implants.
- Smoking – Blood vessels will constrict if you smoke during healing, and your jawbone and implants will not fuse.
- Patient risks or habits during healing – If you grind your teeth, bite your nails, or deviate from a soft-food diet during the healing process, implants can loosen.
- Gum disease – Infected tissue around implants can prevent your jawbone from integrating.
- Lack of bone density – Jawbone supports implants. The implant fixtures won’t fuse to the jawbone if you lack bone density. They can easily loosen.
Select a dentist with advanced training and years of experience with dental implants or who works with a skilled oral surgeon for implant placement. Schedule at least two second-opinion appointments to compare your options.
Baton Rouge dentist Dr. Steven Brooksher sponsors this post. Dr. Brooksher is a Fellow of the International Congress of Oral Implantologists.