How Long Does a Dental Implant Last?
A primary benefit of dental implants is their durability and longevity. Under normal circumstances, dental implants will last for decades, and they can, in fact, last a lifetime. There are certain situations, however, that can shorten the lifespan of dental implants.
Gum disease: Gum disease can easily lead to failure of a dental implant. For this reason, any active gum disease will need to be treated prior to placing a dental implant. In addition, it is extremely important that you practice good oral hygiene habits once you have an implant, in order to prevent gum disease. Twice daily brushing, daily flossing and twice yearly professional cleanings are needed to maintain the health of the implant.
Clenching or grinding: In normal use, our upper and lower teeth come into contact for brief moments as we bite and chew foods. Dental implants, like natural teeth, are equipped to handle this occasional pressure. However, clenching or grinding our teeth puts far more pressure on the teeth than the normal act of eating, and this added pressure will eventually damage an implant. Thankfully, this condition can be treated with the use of a mouth guard worn at night to prevent grinding.
Using teeth in improper ways: With a dental implant, you are free to eat essentially any foods. However, chewing on extremely hard objects, such as bones or ice, or non-food items, such as pen caps or nails can damage dental implants. In addition, using your teeth to open packages can also be harmful to a dental implant.
As long as you maintain good oral hygiene habits and avoid the above harmful behaviors, your dental implants should last many decades. To learn more about dental implants or how long they last, contact our dental implants dentist to set up a consultation.
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