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FAQ:  Dental Implant Failures

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Bad Implants  Ask The Dentist Edward Leventhal Question:
Implant problem: I just had two front teeth (#9 and 10) replaced by Strohmann implants.

After having the crowns put on, I was very upset. The implants were not placed exactly within my natural row of front teeth on the gum line. They were placed some distance behind the row of front teeth.

This necessitated large curved crowns. I am constantly aware of the implant site because being placed to the rear of my gumline my tongue is constantly in contact with it.

There is a bump at the point of connection between the crown and implant and this interferes with my bite.

It is uncomfortable and I am totally disappointed after over a year of preparation, cost and suffering. What can I do? ... Visitor from NY

I sympathize with your problem.

If you are hitting the front crowns when you bite, the bone around the implants will soon deteriorate. You need an immediate trip to the dentist who installed the crowns for an adjustment.

Since normal teeth have a periodontal ligament that holds them in the jaw, they have a natural give when you bite. Implants are attached to the bone with no give. The only time implant supported teeth should make contact in a bite is after all natural teeth are in a "clench" position.

The real problem here is esthetics. If the implants were placed in the wrong position, why were they restored?

There appear to be two solutions to your problem:
1. - Remove implants, bone graft, place implants in correct position, then properly restore. Having the dentist explain to you why the finished product is ugly does not justify ugly front teeth. If different dentists did implants and crowns, the crown guy should have had the implant guy reposition the implants. I realize that would add a year onto treatment.
2. - Forget the implants and have a 6 unit fixed bridge placed.

Demand excellent esthetics. Excellent esthetics are implied unless difficulties are pointed out prior to treatment. That does not include incorrect placement of implants.

You expect implants to be placed correctly in the correct position, unless the dentist tells you before implant placement that the esthetic result will be mediocre and you opt to have him proceed.

These are alternatives you can discuss with the dentist who placed the crowns, or another dentist altogether.

I urge you to review before and after pictures of results created by the dentist you might choose to proceed with. Make sure the pictures are of patients treated by and results created by the dentist in questiion, not stock photographs that were purchased to show examples of work.

Edward Leventhal, DDS
Baltimore Cosmetic Implant Dentistry
8860 Belair Road
Baltimore, MD 21236
(410) 256-7300

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