When patients come to discuss dental implant replacement of missing teeth, they often ask: “how long do implants last”? The first dental implant was placed in the 1960’s. Therefore, we have a 50+ years of experience with dental implants. The general rule for dental implants is that the success rate ranges from 95 to 98%. It has dramatically changed the face of facial reconstruction. But what about the 2 to 5% that has problems with dental implants. This is where the term: “peri-implantitis” comes up. Peri-implantitis means that there is inflammation around the dental implant. A common cause of this is cement from the placement of the dental crown. The extra cement will need cleaning from the implant surface to prevent bone loss. If the bone loss is greater than 50% of the surface area of the implant or there is loss of bony fusion of the implant then the implant has failed. This will require replacement of the dental implant. However, many cases of peri-implantitis can be treated and the implant saved. This was shown in a recent article in the Journal of Oral Implantololgy (A Two-Stage Surgical Approach to the Treatment of Severe Peri-Implant Defect: A 30-month Clinical Follow-Up Report). If you have problems or concerns with your dental implants, give Dr. John Freeman a call to schedule a consultation. He has been serving the West Houston area for over 14 years.