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A diagram of dental implant at Periodontal Associates. Dental implants are a highly effective solution for lost teeth. Crowns mimic natural teeth in their form and function and titanium posts bond with and stimulate your jaw bone, allowing the implants to act just like a natural tooth would.

Unfortunately, implants can occasionally fail, and if this happens we will need you to come in so we can repair or replace them.

The Structure of an Implant


Most dental implants are made of a titanium post that is embedded in the jaw bone, a ceramic crown that acts as a replacement tooth and an abutment that connects the post and the crown. If one of these parts loosens or breaks, all three can become compromised.

Titanium is usually chosen for implants because it bonds with the jaw bone in a process known as osseointegration. If this process doesn't occur properly then you'll end up with an implant that isn't firmly in place. This will lead to problems later on.

Signs that an Implant May Fail


If the bone doesn't grow around the implant in the right way, mobility is often the primary signal that the implant may fail. This mobility is often very slight at first and usually only a dentist can see it, but as time goes on an implant that hasn't integrated properly can shift when you chew or speak. Implants that have failed completely with frequently.

Other warnings signs of impending failure include pain, inflammation, and infection, but these do not always occur. If Dr. Eshraghi notices that your implant is moving, he may conduct an x-ray to make sure the bone is growing. If the implant is failing, the x-ray may reveal considerable bone loss around the metal area.

Repair and Replacement


In cases where the implant crown becomes cracked or detached, it is an easy matter for us to attach a new, or make any other repairs if necessary. However, if the damage to the implant is too severe, we will need to remove and replace it.

It is easy for us to remove a failed dental implant, but we will need to use a local anesthetic for this procedure. Once the implant is removed Dr. Eshraghi will carefully clean the area. Then we can begin the process of inserting a new implant, making careful note of what went wrong the first time. If there is enough healthy bone in the same area, we won't need a bone graft.

However, in cases of significant bone loss, we may need to place a bone graft to improve the site of the removed implant before placing a new one. Once the bone graft is complete, your mouth may need several months to heal before we can put in a new implant. During the healing period, Dr. Eshraghi may ask you to quit smoking, postpone cancer treatment or make other lifestyle adjustments that will reduce the risk of the next implant failing as well.

Always remember to take good care of your implants by brushing and flossing daily. Also take care to eat a balanced diet and abstain from using your teeth as tools, as this can chip them. If you experience any problems with your implants, contact us right away.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please give us a call at (971) 317-8414.

Symptoms of Gum Disease


Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an infection that damages and destroys the soft tissue and bone that supports your teeth, causing your teeth to become loose and even fall out.

It is a common yet preventable disease, usually resulting from bad dental hygiene. If you brush and floss your teeth twice a day and schedule professional dental exams and cleanings, you can ward off this infection.

What are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?


When your gums are healthy, they are a pale shade of pink and fit firmly around your teeth. If you have periodontal disease, you may have some of the following symptoms:
•  Halitosis (bad breath)
•  Swelling in the gums
•  Gums appear bright red or purple
•  Gums feel tender when you touch them
•  Easily bleeding gums
•  Gums recede from the teeth, making teeth appear elongated
•  New spaces appear in between your teeth
•  Chewing food becomes painful
•  Pus appears between gums and teeth
•  Misaligned teeth
•  Teeth feel loose

Causes of Gum Disease


The primary cause of gum disease is a bacterial plaque, which is a sticky film formed by bacteria that is left to fester on teeth. The untreated plaque will turn into more severe conditions.

When you eat foods that contain sugar and starch, those substances interact with the bacteria that naturally appear in your mouth and form plaque on your teeth. Daily brushing and flossing removes it, but it regenerates rapidly.

If plaque is allowed to stay on your teeth, it can harden into tartar (also known as calculus), which is much harder to remove. Brushing won’t do the job. You’ll need to come in for a professional cleaning to get rid of it.

Plaque can lead to the least severe form of gum disease, known as gingivitis, wherein the gums near the base of your teeth become irritated and inflamed. Proper oral hygiene can reverse this, however.

If inflamed gums are not treated, they can cause pockets to open up between your teeth and gums. These pockets deepen over time, and bacteria will fill them. These pockets undermine tissue and bone as time goes on, eventually resulting in tooth loss. Chronic inflammation also strains the immune system.

Risk Factors for Gum Disease


Dental science has unmasked some factors that can increase your risk of gum disease, and these include:
Factors that can increase your risk of periodontitis include:
•  Poor dental hygiene
•  Chewing tobacco or smoking
•  Drug use
•  Genetics
•  Old age
•  Obesity
•  Gingivitis
•  Hormonal changes, such as those related to pregnancy or menopause
•  Inadequate nutrition, such as vitamin C deficiency
•  Use of medications that lead to changes in the gums or dry mouth
•  Certain diseases, such as Crohn's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and diabetes
•  Conditions that decrease your immunity, such as HIV/AIDS, leukemia and cancer treatment

When to Schedule an Appointment


Keep coming in for dental exams and cleanings once every 6 months. If you see any of the aforementioned symptoms, schedule an appointment right away. The sooner we take action, the more effectively we can reduce and reverse the damage.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please give us a call at (971) 317-8414.
Periodontal Associates in Beaverton, OR

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