Getting dental implants is an investment in your oral health that is meant to last a lifetime. The crowns that top dental implants, however, are more delicate than the biocompatible metal anchors and abutments supporting them. As a result, they might require restoration after several years.
What Is Implant Restoration?
A dental implant restoration is a prosthetic dentistry service designed to restore the dental crown that is attached to the top piece (the abutment) of a dental implant.
How Long Do Dental Implants Last?
Dental implant anchors and abutments are intended to last a lifetime, and they usually do. These portions of dental implants last as long as a person maintains their oral health and does not develop a serious case of periodontal disease which could result in the deterioration of the jawbone and compromise the dental implant’s osseointegration.
A dental crown (the visible, tooth-like portion) that caps a dental implant does not always last a lifetime. Although they are made of porcelain, a durable and strong material in dental applications, dental crowns can wear out and become damaged. On average dental crowns capping dental implants last between 15 and 20 years with proper care.
How to Prolong the Life of Your Dental Implant
You can safeguard your dental implant by practicing good oral hygiene in order to prevent the development of periodontal disease.
Additionally, you should take measures to avoid subjecting the dental crown to excessive pressure, wear, and tear. Refrain from chewing on hard objects like ice, pencils, or pen caps. Never use your teeth as tools (to open a bottle or a package, for example). You can also protect your dental implant by wearing a custom-designed nightguard to prevent excessive wear and tear due to the clenching and grinding associated with sleep bruxism.
Porcelain is resistant to staining, but stains and discoloration are not impossible. Plus, porcelain does not respond to whitening agents the same way that natural tooth enamel does. So, stains often require dental crown replacement. You can help mitigate staining by avoiding highly pigmented foods and beverages in addition to tobacco products of all kinds.
Signs Your Dental Implant Needs to Be Restored
Dental implants do not automatically require replacement or restoration after 15 or 20 years. If yours is in good shape, you can continue to use it as normal. If you notice any of the following issues, however, we recommend scheduling an appointment for a dental implant restoration:
- Chipped, cracked, or broken dental crown
- Your dental crown feels loose or has fallen off
- Your dental crown is stained
If your crown falls off, hold onto the crown. If it is intact, we can simply clean it and your dental implant abutment and reattach your original crown. If the crown is damaged, we can replace it with a new dental crown.
Dental Implants and Implant Restoration With Our Prosthodontist in Loveland, Colorado
To learn more about dental implants and implant restoration, we welcome you to schedule an appointment with Dr. Andrew Bock. Our highly experienced prosthodontist can help you prolong the life of your dental implant and continue enjoying your healthy, fully restored smile for the rest of your life. To schedule an appointment, call Northern Colorado Prosthetic Dentistry or request an appointment online.