Dental implants are excellent solutions for people with missing or severely damaged teeth that can’t be saved. Unlike alternate replacement procedures, dental implants offer incredible bite function and natural appearance and can last a lifetime with proper maintenance.
Given that a dental implant is a relatively costly investment, you might wonder what you can do to care for your new smile and ensure long-term service and success. This guide highlights 8 tips for caring for dental implants to ensure your new smile lasts forever.
Teeth implants are dental prostheses used to replace missing teeth. Implants consist of titanium or zirconium posts that are placed in the jawbone through surgery. The implant fuses with the bone during osseointegration, creating a solid foundation for the artificial tooth or teeth (crown, bridge, or denture). Once complete, the implant looks, feels, and functions like your natural teeth. Visit our office for dental implants in Quincy, MA.
While dental implants are made from artificial materials like titanium and zirconia, they still need to be cleaned and cared for like your natural teeth. Keep in mind the following dental implant maintenance guidelines:
After your implant procedure, your dentist will give you a list of post-operative care for dental implants to promote speedy healing and recovery. Compliance with these instructions ensures you heal quickly and prevent any risks of infections or complications that can lead to implant failure.
Excellent oral hygiene for dental implant patients is vital to prevent infections and keep your implant healthy. While dental implants are made from artificial materials that won’t decay, the gums and teeth nearby can develop problems, affecting the stability and health of your implant. For instance, poor dental hygiene can cause peri-implantitis, a serious infection affecting the tissues and bone around an implant, leading to implant failure.
Brushing and flossing daily is vital for the long-term health of your implant and the surrounding oral tissues. Be sure to avoid hard-bristled brushes and toothpaste as they can damage the implant and surrounding teeth and gums.
An antimicrobial mouthwash or salt water rinse can help kill bacteria and reduce plaque build-up, keeping your implant, gums, teeth, and mouth fresh and healthy.
Regular dental checkups every six months allow your dentist to check your teeth, gums, mouth, and dental works for potential problems and provide the necessary treatment before they worsen. The dentist also cleans your mouth to remove bacterial plaque and tartar around the teeth, gums, and implants, significantly lowering your risk of infections.
One major benefit of implants is that they restore your bite function, allowing you to eat tougher foods easily. However, it’s important to avoid chewing or biting on very hard foods like nuts, ice, and hard candy, as they can cause your dental implant to chip or crack, leading to further fractures and infections. Chewy, sugary, or sticky can also encourage bacteria and plaque accumulation in the mouth, making you more susceptible to infections.
Instead, consider eating softer foods and chop tougher foods into smaller pieces for easy chewing. Also, hydrate well to prevent a dry mouth and lower your risk of oral infections around the implant.
Smoking can slow down your dental implant recovery and encourage infections around the implant. Alcohol also causes a dry mouth and delays healing, leading to infections around the implant. You should avoid tobacco and alcohol before and after getting your implants for long-term success.
Regular teeth grinding and clenching can cause dental implants and teeth to wear down, chip, or crack, leading to infections. Getting a custom night guard for bruxism will ensure optimal dental health and the long-term success of dental implants.
While rare, dental implants can develop complications or fail. Staying vigilant will identify and address any problem promptly to prevent avoidable complications. In particular, contact your dentist or surgeon immediately if you experience pain, swelling, redness, or pus around your implant.
Are you interested in dental implants? Or perhaps you need more tips on how to care for your dental implants? Contact and book a dentist appointment at Quincy Dental Associates for more information.
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