Dental Implant Failure and Poor Oral Health
Dental implants are widely recognized as the most reliable and longest-lasting tooth replacement option. However, proper oral hygiene is necessary for their success, just as it is necessary for the health of your natural teeth.
Here, our team at Texas Denture Clinic in Fort Worth, TX explains how implant dentistry can improve your quality of life. We also explore the link between dental implant failure and poor oral health.
Dental Implants: A Brief Overview
Crafted from medical-grade titanium or ceramic, dental implants replace the roots of missing teeth. These threaded posts integrate with the natural jawbone tissue over time to provide strong, stable anchors for a variety of custom restorations, including crowns, bridges, and dentures.
Oral Hygiene and Dental Implants
Proper brushing and flossing are essential for long-term, optimal oral health. While it is true that dental implants are impervious to decay, they are still susceptible to infection and periodontal disease, which can erode the supporting jawbone and cause the implants to loosen.
Therefore, patients with dental implants should continue their regular oral hygiene regimen. This should include brushing at least twice a day and flossing once a day. The use of an alcohol-free, anti-bacterial mouthwash is also recommended to keep harmful microbe levels at bay.
Peri-implantitis is a condition characterized by inflammation around the implant posts. If left untreated, this inflammation can lead to a widespread bacterial infection. As a result, the implants can become mobile or even fall out over time.
Practicing Proper Care after Implant Placement
Immediately after your dental implant procedure, your doctor will provide you with a detailed list of post-operative instructions. These will be catered to your specific situation. However, there are a few general guidelines that can help you enjoy a successful recovery:
- Brush and floss thoroughly as your comfort level allows.
- Rinse your mouth gently with a warm saltwater solution twice a day.
- Do not smoke for one month prior to your implant surgery or during the three to six months of healing after your procedure.
Once placed, your implants will require several months of healing. During this time, the posts will fuse to the jawbone during a process called osseointegration.
Long-term Tips for Dental Implant Maintenance
Once full recovery has taken place, it is important to continue caring for your implants. Proper oral hygiene can help you preserve your new smile for many years to come. Be sure to:
- Brush after every meal: While we absolutely recommend brushing at least twice a day, it is a good idea to brush thoroughly after every meal. This will effectively remove food particles, debris, and plaque deposits, therefore reducing your risk for peri-implantitis.
- Floss around your implants: One of the benefits of dental implants is that they can be cleaned just like natural teeth. Ask your dentist or hygienist to demonstrate proper flossing techniques for dental implants. If necessary, floss threaders and interproximal brushes can be used.
- Keep your appliance clean: If your implants are connected to a removable appliance, such as an implant-supported denture, be sure to thoroughly clean your prosthesis daily to keep bacteria levels at bay.
- Attend routine dental visits: Your dentist will recommend an appropriate cleaning schedule for you. Some patients benefit from six-month cleanings, while others may need more frequent visits. Regular dental appointments allow your dentist to assess your implants and properly monitor your oral health.
Contact Texas Denture Clinic and Implant Center
If you are considering dental implants, proper oral hygiene is a must. To learn more or to schedule an appointment at our practice, contact us online or give us a call.