I have had a dental implant for quite some time, about 22 years. In recent, months it became loose. I went back to see my dentist and he told me the implant is infected. He wants to remove it and said he could replace it with a dental bridge. The teeth next to the dental implant are healthy, so I am not too keen on grinding them down. Is there an antibiotic I can take to deal with this infection and keep my dental implant?
I am sorry your dental implant is giving you trouble but glad that it lasted as many years as it did. Once your dental implant is loose it means that it will fail, so taking an antibiotic will not solve the problem. The damage has already been done, usually in the form of bone loss. That bone is essential to retain your dental implant.
While a dental bridge is an option, it does not sound like one that you are excited about. If you want to, you can get a new dental implant put in its place but it will take some work. First, you will want to deal with any residual infection that is left after you have the dental implant removed. Then, you will need to replace the bone structure that was lost from both the infection and the extraction. You can do that with a bone grafting procedure. Once that is healed, you can then have a new implant placed. That is a lot of procedures, but it will give you back a dental implant.
Other than that, a dental bridge is the next best option, but yes, it would mean grinding down the two healthy adjacent teeth. A third option is a removable partial denture but it will not be nearly as secure as your dental implant was as it is not permanently placed.
This blog is brought to you by Hilton Head Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Bonnie Rothwell.