Grinding Your Teeth May Cause Problems For Your Dental Implants

Dental implants are one of the best ways to restore your smile if you’re missing one or more teeth in Woburn, Winchester, or Burlington, and Dr. Talar Guldalian specializes in implant dentistry at Nova Dental.

But did you know that teeth grinding (bruxism) can cause serious problems for dental implants, and even lead to dental implant failure? If you grind your teeth, you need to take the proper steps to protect your teeth and implants. Learn more about teeth grinding & implants below, and find out everything you need to know. 

Teeth Grinding & Clenching Can Cause Dental Implant Failure

Teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism) is a common problem in America, and around 8-13% of people grind their teeth frequently. This “parafunctional habit” can cause major complications with dental implants, including the fracture of the implant, loosening or fracture of the implant screw, or fracture of the porcelain restoration. 

Bruxism puts excessive stress on your teeth and on dental implants, which are inserted into the gum and jaw bone and function just like a natural tooth root. Over time, serious grinding and clenching can cause premature wear & tear and breakage of dental implants and dental implant restorations.

In a study done across 450 patients who had 640 dental implants, it was found that patients who reported regular bruxism had a 10-year implant survival rate of about 92%, which is lower than the 95-98% survival rate for all patients. 

What Can Be Done To Prevent This From Happening? 

In some cases, teeth grinding and clenching can be addressed with lifestyle changes. Things like getting enough sleep, reducing stress, and avoiding caffeine and alcohol have been shown to help reduce the prevalence of teeth grinding.

Proper bite alignment can also help reduce the prevalence of grinding, and the damage done by frequent clenching and grinding. Even if you have one or two dental implants, you may be able to get Invisalign or a similar orthodontic treatment to correct your bite and reduce the frequency and intensity of grinding.

Usually, though, the best option is a custom-fitted nightguard. A night guard will fit your teeth perfectly, and spread out the force of clenching and grinding while cushioning your teeth and implants. This prevents damage to both your natural teeth and your implants.

Dental Implant Failure – What's Next?

This depends on the specifics of the situation, and how long you’ve had your dental implant. If your implant has been damaged by bruxism, it may sometimes be possible to repair and replace it without having to remove the implant.

If the implant fails and needs to be removed but your mouth is healthy, it may be removed and you may have a new implant placed along with a bone graft to hold it in place.

Each case is different, so it’s important to see Dr. Talar Guldalian as soon as possible to assess the damage to your implant and discuss the best options for restoring your smile. As a prosthodontist, she can quickly evaluate your oral health and develop a custom treatment plan to protect and preserve your implant.

Grinding Your Teeth With An Implant? Contact Nova Dental For A Consultation!

At Nova Dental, Dr. Guldalian can ensure that your mouth and implant are healthy, provide you with recommendations on how to reduce the severity of bruxism, and create a custom-fitted night guard to protect your teeth and your implant. So don’t wait. Contact us online or give us a call at (781) 369-5722 if you’re worried about teeth grinding with a dental implant.