My Dental Implant Fell Out: Now What

Dental implants do not often get loose or fall out, especially if no dental trauma or illness occurs. However, if an implant falls out, it is considered a dental emergency that requires immediate treatment. In this article, we will discuss why a dental implant can get loose and answer the question, “My dental implant fell out: now what?”

What Does a Loose Implant Mean?

Typically, a dental implant consists of three parts:

  • The implant body (the metal post that is screwed into the bone and is fused with it)
  • The spacer sleeve (it shapes the gums and connects the post to the crown)
  • The crown (it is shaped like a natural tooth and placed on top of the implant)

It might be the case that if your dental implant feels loose, it is only the top part—the crown—that got loose and not the implant (metal post within the bone) itself. In other, more severe, and complicated cases, the post can be the problem.

Reasons for Loose Dental Implants

There are several reasons why your implant might get loose or fall out. Most often, they are:

  • Facial trauma or any other kind of physical dental damage can dislodge the crown or damage the bone to which the implant is attached.
  • Severe cases of decay in teeth surrounding the implant or periodontal disease negatively affect the bone and gum tissues and can lead to less support for the implant.
  • Peri-implantitis is inflammation of the tissue surrounding your dental implant. Plaque and bacteria can get attached to the surface of the implant, causing an inflammatory reaction in the tissue. This can destroy the soft tissue and bone around the implant, making it loose or fall out.
  • Initially, improperly placed implants or crowns can result in implant failure or a loose crown.
  • Some general health conditions (for example, diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis) or medication (SSRIs, PPIs, GERDs, etc.) can cause a loss in bone volume or changes in its structure, decreasing the support available for the implant.

Sings of a Loose Dental Implant

If your implant has not yet fallen out, but you feel that it is getting loose, the following symptoms might help you determine if this is the case:

  • Pain and swelling in the gum surrounding the implant
  • Redness or bleeding of the gum surrounding the implant
  • The implant moves if touched with a finger or a tongue.
  • Discoloration of the implant

My Dental Implant Fell Out: Now What?

Only your dentist can determine the cause and severity of the issue, so it is best to contact the office immediately. The doctor will take X-rays and examine your mouth carefully to determine the best course of treatment.

Often, if only the crown becomes loose or falls out, it can be reattached quite easily. In some cases, the problem lies in the metal part—abutment— that connects the crown to the structure underneath the gums. Typically, the abutments can be replaced as well.

In rare cases, when the implant becomes loose underneath the gum, it can be a sign of bone density loss, periodontal disease, or an initially improperly installed implant. In some cases of early implant failure, it can be redone.

If periodontal disease is the cause in the early stages, it might be treated with antibiotics. If the treatment is successful, the implant might be reinserted. In more severe cases of periodontal disease or bone density loss, your implant might have to be obliterated. Then, further treatment will be applied, after which your dentist will be able to determine if you can have a new dental implant.

How to Prevent Dental Implants from Getting Loose or Falling Out?

Maintain sufficient oral hygiene to prevent tooth decay or gum disease from occurring and developing.
Have regular checkups and professional cleanings—every 6 to 12 months— to make sure that any issue is spotted and treated before it can cause significant harm to your oral health and dental implants
Consider using a mouthguard if playing sports that put you at risk of oral trauma.
Carefully choose only a highly qualified and reputable dentist to receive your dental implant treatment to begin with
Consult your physician to assess your general health before deciding in favor of receiving dental implants.

Could You Make an Appointment at Our Office?

If your dental implant unexpectedly fell out or became loose, it is an emergency that requires immediate attention. At Smile Studio, we have an emergency dentist who provides same-day appointments. Do not hesitate to call us today and make an appointment.

If you have any other questions, are considering getting dental implants, or want to schedule a checkup, we are looking forward to welcoming you to our office in Upland.