If you have received a dental implant sometime in the past, then the know that the surgery was somewhat painful. However, the pain subsides quickly and your implant has likely felt pain-free for some time. If soreness seems to crop up or sneak up on you several years after dental implant placement, then you may have an issue with the device that needs to be assessed. Keep reading to learn about a few problems that may be occurring:
Dental implants are obviously not living teeth. However, the gum tissues and the jawbone are living and these are the two areas where you are likely to feel some soreness. The gum tissues are susceptible to gum disease, and this is a common issue that surfaces with dental implants. The natural teeth are held to the gum tissues with the help of something called the periodontal membrane. The membrane keeps food and bacteria from reaching down and around the edges of the tooth.
Dental implants do not have a membrane to protect the crown. Bacteria and food can then slip underneath the gums and cause infection issues. This can cause a great deal of soreness and you may see the gums turning swollen and red. If this problem occurs, your dentist will need to clean underneath the gums to release as much of the debris as possible. A deep root scaling is often arranged for this. You also may be asked to use a water flosser, an electric toothbrush, or a pointed traditional toothbrush to clean as close to the gumline as possible.
If the gums are healthy, then the pain you feel may be related to jawbone deterioration. This type of problem can occur due to gum disease and bacterial activity or the bone may have started to wear down due to osteoporosis or the effects of a poor diet. When jaw pain surfaces, this means that the dental implant root has likely come away from the jaw. This means the implant has started to fail.
Dental implant failure usually means that your implant root must be removed. However, the good news is that the bone can heal and a bone graft can be completed as well. If the jaw can be restored, then a new implant can be placed. It is wise to have a failing implant removed as soon as a problem is noted. Complete and proper healing is more likely if immediate action is taken.
You do have the option of having an alternative tooth replacement device inserted in your mouth instead of an implant device. Speak with your dental professional about the other options that are available to you.