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Can Dental Implants Really Break?

So you spent all this money on a dental implant, and it broke when you were eating an apple.  How can we prevent that from happening in the future? 

Single Tooth Implants are one of the most successful things that can be done to replace missing teeth. Failures are rare when planned properly, placed correctly, and with good patient home care. But unfortunately, like everything in the mouth, failures can happen. So make sure you read to the end to learn about the number one thing that causes implants to break. 

How Rare Is it For a Dental Implant to Break, and Why?

A fracture of the titanium implant is very rare to happen to do the material of the implant. There are a few reasons as to why this might happen and here are few listed below.

The Wrong Size or the Wrong Implant Was Used

The only time that happens generally speaking is if you use way too small of an implant. Sometimes even if  an off-brand implant is used, or a tooth to big is placed. What usually breaks is the tiny abutment screw that holds everything together. And that’s a recoverable problem. If the implant and the bone actually breaks, that’s a more involved procedure where the implant will need to be surgically removed, and place bone in the area, allow it to heal, and reimplant. 

The Implant Failed to Take in the Jaw Bone

One of the other reasons that an implant might fail is that it failed to actually take in the jawbone. Now, this can be for a variety of reasons. Usually, it’s because the quality of bone wasn’t strong enough to hold the implant. The process of placing an implant involves the healthy Jawbone actually growing onto the surface of the implant. A lot of times if this doesn’t happen, the implant will fail within the first three months. 

The best way to prevent this type of failure is proper planning through a three-dimensional cone beam image we can look at and we can diagnose and make sure that the areas that we’re planning to place the implant are strong enough and have adequate bone to support that implant. Once the implant has fully grown into the bone, in about three to four months, and the crown has been put on top of the implant, 

Too Much Forced Placed on the Implant

The next cause for failure is the tiny screw that holds the crown to the implant. A lot of times this is caused by too much force placed on the implant and the way it can be prevented  is with proper planning, but also making sure that the tooth fits in the mouth and isn’t too tall or isn’t in the wrong position so it’s overloaded in an incorrect direction. 

Failure of the Crown on Top of the Implant

The third and final reason for an implant failure is actually when the crown on top of the implant fails and this is usually due to a porcelain fracture from the tooth being overloaded. An implant crown is just as strong as a crown on your natural teeth, but it’s not a super tooth. While it is strong and aesthetic and it looks like the other teeth, something to keep in mind is you do have to treat it and respect it like the other teeth in your mouth.

Diet Tips to Keep in Mind for Your Dental Implant

A normal diet is fine. You can eat and chew and function and treat it just like your regular teeth. But some of the funnier instances that had people thinking that their implants were strong involved frozen milk duds, trying to break chicken bones, and a big factor is actually chewing ice. 

Ice is not good for your regular teeth, but when you add in the cold and you add in the hard, we see a lot of fractures from that. 

Obviously, this is not an all-inclusive list of why an implant might fail, but there will be more information given to you during an appointment.

Dr. Brett Langston and the team at Dental Implant & Aesthetic Specialists can provide a discussion with you if a dental implant fracture is what happened to you. Reach out today to learn more.