Tooth Clenching and Grinding: Am I still a candidate for dental implants?

Woman with Mouth PainClenching and grinding one’s teeth is a common habit that people develop during times of stress and anxiety. Like other responses to life’s stressors, this habit can have negative consequences on a person’s health. Also known as bruxism, teeth grinding wears down the structures of teeth and can cause permanent damage. Bruxism also strains the joints that connect the jaw to the face. If a patient is planning to receive dental implants, it is best to control teeth clenching and grinding by breaking this habit and wearing protective oral appliances at night. When determining if dental implants are right for you, feel free to discuss your habits and oral health history with our compassionate team of oral surgeons so that our specialists can best serve your needs.

Can bruxism affect dental implants?

While dental implants are incredibly durable, bruxism can have an effect on them—especially after the initial placement of the implant. This is because bone has to fuse to the implant to stabilize it. Placing unnecessary pressure near the implant site by clenching and grinding one’s teeth can affect the stabilization process. Additionally, bruxism affects the oral health of biological teeth and can lead to tooth loss in severe cases.

Are there other conditions and habits that can affect implants?

Yes, a few conditions can affect the stability of an implant. In its advanced stages, gum disease can destroy bone mass, cause tooth loss and is a common condition that affects one’s candidacy for successful implants. Patients who have immunosuppression due to illness, such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, may have difficulty healing after surgery. Fortunately there are some preliminary treatments patients can receive, such as tissue grafts and periodontal disease therapy, that can increase the success rate of a dental implant.

If you are wondering whether you are a candidate for replacing lost teeth with implants, we recommend that you schedule a consultation with one of our oral surgeons for an examination. During your appointment, we can determine the best course of action to restore your oral health.

Call Oral Surgery Associates of North Texas at your convenience to reserve your appointment.