Do you see dental implants in your near future? Implants are becoming increasingly popular because of their many benefits including their natural appearance, bone loss prevention, long life, and prevention of premature aging. In fact, over 3 million Americans are already reaping the benefits. However, in order to get the most out of your implants, it’s crucial that you’re caring for them properly. Continue reading to learn about steps you should be taking to care for your implants.
Use a Soft-Bristled Toothbrush
After you get dental implants, it’s especially important that you are using a soft-bristled toothbrush. This is because brushes with harder bristles can scratch the surface of your implants. They can also damage your gums and cause bleeding. The truth is that soft bristles are just as effective at cleaning your teeth as medium and hard bristles but with much less risk.
Use Low-Abrasive Toothpaste
You should be using sensitive cleaning products as much as you can after you get your dental implants, whether that be toothpaste or mouthwash. This is because ingredients like baking soda and stain-remover agents can damage your replacement teeth. The best thing to do would be to buy a toothpaste that is made especially for people who have dental implants. Ask your dentist what they recommend.
Brush Twice and Floss Once Daily
When you have dental implants, you are more likely to develop periodontal disease. Brushing your teeth twice and flossing once every single day is crucial to prevent this from occurring. When plaque accumulates around your implants, it can lead to oral hygiene issues if it isn’t removed. Be sure that you are brushing around and beneath the implant crown. There are special toothbrushes available to help with this. There are also many different types of floss out there that are designed specifically for people with dental implants, so there is no excuse!
Avoid Hard and Sticky Foods
Hard and sticky foods can damage dental implants as well as your natural teeth. Some foods that you should avoid or be especially careful with are caramel, dried fruit, hard candies, potato chips, apples, hard breads, carrots, and hard-shell tacos. By being extra careful, you can lengthen the life of your dental implants.
Don’t Smoke or Drink Heavily
It is best to avoid these things anyways, but when you have dental implants, this is even more important. Right after you get dental implants, smoking and drinking has shown to slow down the healing process and needs to be avoided. Both of these activities also increase your risk for periodontal disease which can put your implants at risk in the future.
See Your Dentist
You should visit your dentist every six months in order to have your teeth cleaned and examined. Your dentist will check to ensure that your gums are healthy and your implants are in good shape.
If you have dental implants, be sure that you are taking these steps so you will be able to experience the benefits for a lifetime. Good oral hygiene is key to a healthy smile.
About the Author
Dr. Stephen Remmers is a well-experienced dentist serving patients in the Louisville, KY area. He pursued his Doctor of Dental Medicine at the University of Louisville School of Dentistry and has been working in the field for over three decades. Dr. Remmers has completed training at the Midwest Implant Institute in Columbus and is a member of numerous organizations including the American Academy of Implant Dentistry. For more information on dental implant care or to schedule an appointment, visit his website or call (502) 499-0234.