I have been happy with my dental implant that I have had for several years. But it was probably a few months ago that I have started noticing an ugly brown line that is visible on the back of it. Last time I went in for a cleaning, I intended to talk to my implant dentist about it. But I totally spaced it and when I thought to look again, it seemed to be gone. I thought that maybe the hygienist cleaned it off. But after several weeks it crept back. So maybe it was there all along and I overlooked it? I don’t know what’s up? Is it serious? Would it be silly to schedule an appointment to have it checked out?
-Stacey in Connecticut
From what you have described it should like a small stain on the dental implant. Typically dental crowns and dental implants are made of porcelain. This restoration material is highly stain resistant, but over time they can pick up tiny scratches or defects. Those indentations can pick up stains. So like you said, it’s possible that the hygienist removed the staining at your last cleaning, only to have it reappear.
It’s hard to say if it is a serious issue or not. A small scratch is no big deal. But a crack could be more serious. For example, there is no way to tell how deep the crack goes into the crown that covers the dental implant. If it was deep, then the possibility exists that it may break or shatter under chewing forces. It wouldn’t hurt to give the dentist a call. If it’s a small stain, it can likely be buffed out and smoothed to prohibit the staining from returning. But if it’s a deeper crack, a new porcelain crown would need to be created. You wouldn’t have to go through the surgical process again for the implant. It would just be that a new tooth would be reattached.
Thank you for your question.
This post is sponsored by Barrington cosmetic dentist James T. Gavrilos, DDS