There is no doubt that for many patients who are considering dental implants, the success rate of the surgery is an important factor. No one would choose to go through a surgery only to end up two months later with dental implant failure. Thankfully, dental implants are highly successful and failure is uncommon. In fact, according to the American Association of Maxillofacial Surgeons, the overall success rate of dental implants is about 95%. The upper and the lower jaw have differing success rates due to the decreased density of the upper jaw, making the upper jaw have a “5% increased failure rate than the lower jaw.” Smokers face a higher failure rate than non-smokers.
Reasons for Dental Implant Failure
In the event of dental implant failure, there are only a few reasons why that could occur, as failure is uncommon. In most cases when we think of the failure of any surgical implant we might think it is due to an immune reaction or something of that nature. Dental implants generally fail for three reasons: inadequate bone, prosthetic load or infection.
The density of the jaw is the major factor that plays into the success of a dental implant placement. If there is not enough bone in the area where the implant is placed, failure can occur.
The prosthetic load is when the dental implant cannot support the chewing load. This is often due to improper placement of the implant. Improper placement will cause the biting motion of the person’s mouth to impact the implant. Grinding of the teeth could also cause this. “People with Bruxism, a condition characterized by grinding the teeth at night while sleeping, may not be the ideal candidate for implants.”
If infection occurs, it is often because of preexisting bacteria in the jawbone. When an implant comes upon this bacteria the patient will get an infection or rejection of the implant.
Existing infection which is found frequently with abscessed teeth may keep the dentist from placing the implant at the same time the teeth are extracted. Placing implants in the presence of infection decreases their success rate.
Although those are some of the facts surrounding dental implant failure, as mentioned, the success rate is 90-95%, still making dental implants a great option for many patients.