Six Factors that Affect the Longevity of Dental Implants By Daniel Whiteman D.M.D. on July 01, 2021

Image of a dentist applying dental crown to a dental implant modelDental implants are considered a long-term solution for patients that need to replace teeth. If you’re considering dental implants, you may be wondering how long dental implants last.

In a 2017 study, the Journal of International Society of Preventative and Community Dentistry reported: “90-95% … as the success rate of dental implants over 10 years.” Generally speaking, dentists intend for dental implants to be a permanent solution, but the restoration (crown, bridge, or denture) must be replaced when damaged or worn down.

Dr. Daniel Whiteman uses contemporary methods to place dental implants for patients in Brookline, MA, and Boston, MA. Now that you know how long dental implants can last, let’s review four factors that may influence dental implant success and their longevity.

Good Oral Hygiene

Like natural teeth, consistent, thorough oral hygiene routines are essential for reducing the risk of periodontal (gum) disease. In a comparative study by the Journal of Clinical Periodontology, researchers discovered that periodontal status is a significant risk factor for late implant failures.

Preventing and managing periodontal disease may ultimately increase the success rate of your dental implants. Here are some habits that promote healthy gums:

  • Brush and floss the teeth twice per day
  • Use alcohol-free mouthwash to reduce oral bacteria
  • Visit the dentist at least twice a year for exams and cleanings, or if you notice any pain or abnormalities in your mouth

Smoking

In the same comparative study, smoking was also a significant risk factor for late implant failures. Smoking has adverse effects on both general and oral health. These effects can negatively impact the success of dental implants.

Another study published by the Journal of International Society of Preventative and Community Dentistry informed “patients with the combination of smoking and poor oral hygiene had about three times greater bone loss after 10 years than nonsmokers.” Bone density is imperative because dental implants must be stable in the jawbone.

Bone Loss

Inadequate bone quantity or quality may increase the risk of implant failure. According to the Journal of Applied Oral Science, continuing bone atrophy “could also put at risk implant survival in the long term.” Implants need adequate jawbone to remain secure.

Bruxism

Bruxism, or teeth grinding, is linked to many oral health issues, including dental implant failure. In 2018, Contemporary Clinical Dentistry published an article focused on the survival rate of dental implants in patients with bruxism. Researchers found that “42.9% of failure was observed” in patients with bruxism. Excessive overload on occlusion (biting and grinding dental surfaces) can lead to:

  • Loosening or fracture of the screw
  • Fracture of porcelain

Bruxism is common, and dentists can help. If you believe that you grind your teeth at night or during high-stress situations, your dentist can create a custom mouth guard to help offset excessive occlusal forces.

Contact Us Today

Though rare, a variety of behaviors can lead to implant failure. If you’d like to know more about dental implants, call (617) 731-4746 or message us online to schedule a consultation at our Brookline, MA location.

Dr. Whiteman

Whiteman Dental Associates Daniel M. Whiteman, DMD

Dr. Daniel Whiteman is dedicated to providing exceptional care at his Brookline, MA, practice. 

  • Licensed to practice in the U.S., Canada, and Israel
  • Over 20 years in practice
  • Uses state-of-the-art technology
  • ADA-compliant office
  • General, cosmetic, and restorative treatments
  • Patient-oriented approach

To schedule your consultation, contact us online or call us at (617) 731-4746.

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