Dental Implant Failure: Signs, Causes, and how to prevent

Dental implants have revolutionized modern dentistry, providing a long-lasting solution for lost teeth. Implants are artificial tooth roots made of biocompatible materials, such as titanium, that fuse with the jawbone to hold a prosthetic tooth or crown in place.

Implants offer several benefits over traditional dentures and bridges, such as improved appearance, comfort, and functionality. Nevertheless, just as any surgical procedure, dental implant treatment bears certain risks and complications, including dental implant failure.

dental implant failure

This post from Sydney Dental will provide you with a detailed overview on dental implant failure, including what it is, the causes, symptoms, treatment, as well as prevention. Wait no longer, let’s get into it right now!

1. What is Dental Implant Failure?

implant failure
Fig 1. What is Dental Implant Failure? – Sydney Dental Vietnam.

Dental implant failure refers to when a dental implant, which is a titanium post or screw that is surgically placed in the jawbone to support a dental prosthesis like a crown or bridge, fails to integrate with the surrounding bone tissue or becomes loose or dislodged after successful integration.

It is a rare but significant complication that can occur during or after implant surgery and can result from various factors, such as implant design, surgical technique, patient factors, and post-operative care. When dental implant failure occurs, it can lead to a series of symptoms and require timely, proper treatment.

2. What is the implantation failure symptoms?

implant failure
Fig 2. What is the implantation failure symptoms?  – Sydney Dental Vietnam.

The signs and symptoms of dental implant failure differ by the severity and their location. The most common manifestations are:

  • Pain or discomfort: Patients may experience pain or discomfort around the implant site, especially with chewing or biting;
  • Mobility: Implants should be firmly anchored to the jawbone. If the implant is loose or moving, it may be a sign of implant failure;
  • Inflammation or swelling: Inflammation or swelling around the implant site can be a sign of implant failure or infection;
  • Gum recession: Can cause gum recession around the implant, exposing the implant’s metal post;
  • Prosthetic issues: The prosthetic tooth or crown may be loose or not fit correctly, indicating implant failure.

3. What are the causes of a failed dental implant?

Dental implant failure can arise as a result of a range of factors. The most common ones are as follows:

front tooth implant
Fig 3. What are the causes of a failed dental implant? – Sydney Dental Vietnam.

3.1. Implant design

The design and quality of the implant can play an essential role in the success of dental implantation. Cheap and low-quality implants may not hold the same level of biocompatibility as high-quality implants, resulting in implant failure. Implants with poor surface characteristics, such as roughness or coating failure, can also cause poor osseointegration.

3.2. Implantation technique

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Fig 4. Implantation technique can cause the dental implant failure – Sydney Dental Vietnam.


Implant surgery is a complex procedure that requires precise placement of the implant in the patient’s jawbone. The surgeon must have extensive training and years of experience in order to perform the surgery successfully.

If the implant is placed incorrectly or not deep enough, it can result in poor osseointegration and thus implant failure.

3.3. The patient’s conditions

Certain factors held by the patient can raise the risk of dental implant failure, such as poor oral hygiene, smoking, diabetes, osteoporosis, and radiation therapy. These risk factors can impact the bone quality and healing process, making it harder for the implant to get anchored to the jawbone.

3.4. The aftercare

Proper post-op care is of paramount importance for the treatment success. Patients must follow the dental care provider’s directions, which may include abstaining from hard foods, keeping good oral hygiene, and going to follow-up appointments.

Failure to stick to these instructions can make it more likely for implant failure to occur.

implant failure
Fig 5. Take good care of teeth after getting implant can prevent implant failure ratio – Sydney Dental Vietnam.

4. How can a dental implant failure be treated?

The treatments for dental implant failure are dependent on the severity and cause of the failure. In most cases, the dental care provider will try to save the implant through one of the following treatments:

  • Non-surgical remedies: If the implant failure is due to infection or inflammation, the dentist may prescribe antibiotics or perform a deep cleaning to remove bacteria and debris from the implant site;
  • Bone grafting surgery: If the implant failure is due to poor bone quality or quantity, the dentist may perform a bone graft procedure to rebuild the jawbone and improve the implant’s support;
  • Implant removal and replacement: If the implant is severely damaged or beyond saving, the dentist may need to remove the implant and replace it with a new one. The dentist may also need to perform bone grafting or other extra procedures to ensure the success of the new implant;
  • Laser therapy: Laser therapy can be used to stimulate bone growth around the implant, promoting osseointegration and improving the implant’s stability.

5. How to prevent implantation failure?

implant failure
Fig 6. How to prevent implantation failure? – Sydney Dental Vietnam.

Preventing dental implant failure is crucial for successful implant surgery. Patients can take several steps to minimize the risk of implant failure, such as:

5.1. Go with a qualified dental professional

Patients should choose a qualified and experienced dentist to perform the implant surgery. The dentist should have extensive training in implant surgery and use high-quality implants and materials.

5.2. Maintaining good oral hygiene

Patients should maintain good oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing regularly and visiting the dentist for routine cleanings and checkups.

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Fig 7. Maintaining good oral hygiene helps to prevent you from dental implant failure

5.3. Quitting smoking

Smoking can increase the risk of implant failure by reducing blood flow to the gums and bone tissue. Patients should quit smoking before and after the implant surgery.

5.4. Treating medical conditions

Patients with medical conditions such as diabetes, osteoporosis, or radiation therapy should work with their healthcare providers to manage their conditions and optimize their bone health.

5.5. Adhering to post-op instructions

Patients should follow the surgeon’s instructions for post-op care, such as avoiding hard or crunchy foods, taking prescription medications, and showing up at follow-up visits.

6. Conclusion

Dental implant failure is a rare but potentially dangerous complication that can arise during or after implant surgery. Implant failure can result from various factors, such as implant design, surgical technique, patient factors, and post-operative care.

Patients can minimize the risk of implant failure by choosing a certified surgeon, practicing good oral hygiene, quitting smoking, controlling their health conditions, and following post-surgery care instructions. Contact us right now if you want to know more information here or via +84 90 271 42 53


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