Does It Feel Like Your Jaw Doesn't Close Properly with Your New Dental Implant?
A completed dental implant should feel and function just like a natural tooth, and this is largely the advantage of implants over other forms of tooth replacement. Ongoing problems are rare, and can usually be corrected in an uncomplicated way. Does it feel like your jaw somehow doesn't close properly after your implant has been completed? This could seem like a serious issue, but the cause is more innocent than you think.
When your jaw is closed, your upper and lower dental arches (rows of teeth) make contact with each other, with each tooth resting against its opposite. Your upper left premolar rests against your lower left premolar, your upper central incisor makes contact with your lower central incisor, and so forth. Why does this feel different after your dental implant was placed?
A dental implant is only completed when its permanent crown (which is its false tooth) is attached. The specifications of this crown have been very carefully measured, with your dentist either creating a digital 3D model of the site or taking a manual dental impression in order to get the exact measurements needed to create the crown. The crown should replicate the precise dimensions of the natural tooth it's replacing.
When those measurements are off by even the tiniest fraction, the crown may be too high. The false tooth should comfortably rest against its counterpart in the opposing dental arch, but instead, it makes premature contact—preventing the rest of your teeth from resting comfortably against each other. Your jaw then tries to compensate.
If you find your upper and lower dental arches resting slightly to the side of each other, the implant may be at fault. As far as complications go, this one is fairly minor, although your bite is being moved out of alignment. Fortunately, this is only due to the fractionally excessive height of your implant's crown, instead of a significant orthodontic issue. Contact the dentist who handled your dental implant placement.
Dental implant services involve more than just implant surgery and placement. Your dental crown will need to be modified, and this just involves some minor resizing. The crown can be filed down and reshaped to remove a tiny amount of its height, and this is a painless experience. Oftentimes the crown doesn't need to be removed for such a minor procedure, but if needed, it can be briefly detached from your implant.
If it feels like your jaw isn't closing properly after you've received your dental implant, see a dentist. Having your upper and lower sets of teeth rest to the side of each other may not be a major issue, but it can cause unnecessary strain on the muscles and tendons of your face. It can be uncomfortable, and this discomfort is entirely avoidable.