Dental implants are not immune to the effects of poor dental hygiene habits or rough care. They require the same care as your natural teeth, for they are just as susceptible to ailments, such as gum disease and gum recession. Guaranteed Dental Solutions in Phoenix, AZ, will teach you how to properly care for your dental implants in order to ensure their longevity. A better understanding of dental implant care prior to your implant surgery will reduce discomfort, shorten your recovery time, and enhance your overall quality of life.
The Dangers of Neglecting Your Dental Implants
There are several potential dangers that may arise if you do not properly care for and protect your dental implants. Thankfully, the two greatest hazards are also the easiest to avoid:
Brushing and flossing after meals and before bed are just as important after dental implant placement as they were before. Flossing between the gum line and your restoration, in particular, is vital. Even with dental implants, oral bacteria and plaque still exist and can build up along your gum line. Over time, this bacteria can move deep into the soft tissue of your gums and form pockets that cause your gums to recede. As the soft tissue begins to recede, it also pulls away from your implants. This can result in loose implant posts or failed osseointegration. Once this occurs, the damage is often too great for your dentist to replace the implant.
Cleaning all sides of your implants is especially important after meals to ensure that even hidden food particles have been removed. Patients should commit to professional cleanings and dental examinations at least every six months.
Repeated Dental Implant Restoration
Although dental implants are intended to last a lifetime, improper care can lead to damaged implant-supported restorations and costly replacement. Failing to clean your restoration as directed or eating hard-to-chew foods or non-food items could break your restoration.
How You Can Damage Your Dental Implants
Common circumstances in which patients may damage their dental implants include:
- Chewing non-food items, such as pens, pencils, caps, and fingernails
- Using teeth to open packages
- Failure to practice proper oral hygiene
- Chewing on ice or hard candy
- Teeth grinding and jaw clenching
- Using tobacco products
We understand that smoking or using other forms of tobacco can be a difficult habit to break. However, quitting is the absolute best thing you can do for your implants. Understanding how tobacco use adversely affects your implants and the permanent damage it can cause to your tissue may help you with your decision. Among these effects are:
- Keratosis: Tobacco burns your oral tissues and supportive bone, causing white scaly patches called keratosis. These patches damage and block your salivary glands. This results in dry mouth, which in turn leads to tooth decay and gum disease.
- Blood vessel constriction: Nicotine constricts blood vessels in the mouth, restricting the amount of blood flow and oxygen to your gums and jawbone. Healing will be much slower and immune defenses are weakened.
- Failed osseointegration: By constricting blood vessels, tobacco also raises blood pressure. This increases your risk of smaller blood vessels closing off altogether and prevents your jawbone and implants from fusing.
We are laser focused on providing individualized care and the best possible experience and outcomes for our patients
Implant Home Care
Patients can easily maintain and care for their dental implant restoration at home. Brushing and flossing after every meal and before bedtime is one of the most important and beneficial steps you can take. The new flossing techniques will take some getting used to with your restoration, but our team of hygienists at Guaranteed Dental Solutions will teach you how to properly brush and floss your teeth and implant-supported restoration.
There are many advantages to using an electric toothbrush to remove food and plaque. Their highly effective and specifically designed brush heads are able to remove more plaque and tartar than non-electric options. A Waterpik flosser is also an effective complement to your toothbrush. It uses a pulsating stream of water to remove food and bacteria from areas that are hard to reach for a toothbrush.
Dental Implant Care is Only a Phone Call Away
At Guaranteed Dental Solutions, our team believes that dental care is not one-size-fits-all. We are laser focused on providing individualized care and the best possible experience and outcomes for our patients. Please contact us today online or call us (480) 477-3090 or (480) 912-2980 to book your dental implant consultation.