Dental implants are an effective way to replace missing or damaged teeth. However, to maintain their strength, function, and natural appearance, you must care for them properly. If you have or are planning to get dental implants, below are several strategies to prolong their life span.
How to Care for Your Dental Implants
1. Brush Often
The long-term success of your implants depends on regular care. Luckily, you do not need to change your normal oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss once daily to remove food debris and bacteria. This prevents the buildup of plaque, which can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
2. Use Gentle Products
Toothpastes with abrasive ingredients—such as baking soda and stain removers—can wear down dental implants and change their color. Instead, look for a low-abrasive toothpaste and soft-bristled toothbrush that manufacturers design for implants.
Also, make sure to brush under and around the implant crown. If you have trouble with this, consider buying an electric or interdental toothbrush for a thorough clean in hard-to-reach-spots.
3. Avoid Chewing Hard Items
Implants are durable, but they are not indestructible. Biting hard objects can damage and wear them down, which is time-consuming and expensive to fix.
Avoid chewing on ice cubes, pens, hard candies, and other solid items. If chewing on objects is a habit, try sugar-free gum instead. You can chew freely whenever the instinct comes over you, without harming your teeth or implants.
4. Prevent Teeth Grinding
Bruxism, or teeth grinding, is an involuntary condition that affects people of all ages. Often, it occurs during sleep, and you might not be aware that you’re doing it. Common symptoms include jaw pain, neck pain, and morning headaches.
This condition places excess pressure on dental implants that can cause lasting damage, so if you experience bruxism, talk with your dentist. With a diagnosis, they can provide a guard to protect your teeth and implants during the night.
5. Visit Your Dentist
Regular dental cleanings and checkups allow your dentist to inspect the implants for possible issues, such as inflammation or a loose screw. Then, they can fix the issue early and offer advice for long-term care. While going in every six months is sufficient for most patients, your dentist may recommend a different schedule, depending on your oral health needs.
For those in need of dental implants, contact Alliance Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery in Keller, TX. These oral surgeons help with a variety of procedures, including wisdom tooth removal, jaw surgery, and impacted canines. Their friendly team prioritizes the comfort of every patient throughout north Fort Worth and Tarrant County. Visit the website for more information about dental implants. To schedule an appointment, call (817) 741-2200.