Reasons For Dental Implant Failure: Bruxism

Chetan Patil, DDS PhD • Sep 5, 2017


At Periodontal Associates, LLC, we offer the latest treatments in periodontal care to protect oral health and keep the tissues supporting the teeth at their best. When these tissues, namely the gums and jawbone, become infected or otherwise compromised, it can lead to tooth loss.


Fortunately, dental implants are one of the most effective treatments for replacing missing teeth. However, there are some conditions that can cause dental implant treatment to fail. Before undergoing dental implant treatment, it’s important to understand some of the reasons for dental implant failure. Bruxism is one possible cause we’ll consider in this overview from Englewood, NJ dentist Chetan Patil.


Understanding Bruxism

Bruxism is a condition in which the teeth are regularly clenched, gnashed, or ground together. Commonly called “teeth grinding,” bruxism often occurs while sleeping but may happen throughout the day.

Bruxism is dangerous to oral health because it puts stress on the teeth and jaws. Additionally, the friction caused by the teeth rubbing together can lead to enamel wear, chipped teeth, or dental fractures. This excess of pressure can lead to implant failure or other damage.  


Bruxism Increases The Risk Of Dental Implant

Untreated bruxism greatly increases the risk of dental implant failure. This is because bruxism can interfere with the healing process essential to the success of dental implant treatment.

The success of dental implant treatment depends on the jawbone’s ability to bond with the dental implant in a process called osseointegration. Osseointegration allows the jawbone to fuse to the dental implant as the bone heals after implant surgery. This bond ensures the implant stays securely within the jawbone, much like a natural tooth root.

Bruxism can interefere with the osseointegration process by causing the implant to move back and forth as the teeth are ground against each other. This constant movement can prevent the jawbone from healing securely around the implant, leading to dental implant failure.

While the jawbone heals after dental implant surgery, it is important for patients to practice care at the surgical site. In addition to seeking treatment for bruxism, patients should stick to soft foods and avoid crunchy foods or chewing on the implant site to avoid dislodging the implant before the bone has fully healed and bonded to the implant.  


Are Bruxism Sufferers Candidates For Dental

Those who have bruxism may still be candidates for dental implants, provided that they first seek treatment for bruxism. Treatment often includes wearing a mouth guard while sleeping, and may also include stress-reducing practices, such as meditation or yoga, as bruxism can be stress-related.

In addition to seeking treatment for bruxism, candidates should have relatively healthy gums and teeth. Ideal candidates should be healthy enough to undergo surgery and be free of such health conditions as uncontrolled diabetes or cardiovascular disease.  


Find Out If Dental Implant Treatment Is Right
For You

For those who suffer from tooth loss, dental implants are a great option for restoring dental function and appearance. To find out if you’re a candidate for dental implant treatment, we welcome you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Patil.

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