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Dental Implants Care – All You Need To Know

Missing teeth can create many issues, from lowering your self-confidence to affecting how you chew or speak. Missing teeth can harm your jawbone health because there’s no longer a tooth root present to stimulate the bone and promote growth. For all these reasons and more, dental implants are a fantastic solution for filling in the gaps in your smile. 

Dental implants look just like a natural tooth and provide even more strength so you can eat what you want and feel good while doing it. A significant benefit of dental implants is their permanence. Unlike dentures, dental implants are designed to last for decades, so you only have to pay for them once. Their longevity depends on the quality of dental care you provide for them, so how can you perform dental implants care that leads to a lasting smile?

 

What is Dental Implant Surgery?

A dental implant procedure is a long process that requires a lot of planning before the surgery.

Once scans and X-rays have provided sufficient information to allow your dentist to move forward with the surgery, you will be scheduled for a one to two hours (per implant) appointment where you will be offered sedation to ease your anxieties, if you typically experience dental phobia and to prevent discomfort during the procedure.

about dental implants care sydney nswHowever, most patients only require a local anaesthetic. Your dentist then makes an incision in your gums and drills into the jawbone to insert a metal rod (usually titanium or zirconia) that will act as an artificial root. 

Once the incision is closed, you will wait for the metal rod to fuse with your jawbone, which takes four to six months. After osseointegration occurs, you can return to the dentist to have the abutment placed in a second surgical procedure. An abutment connects the dental implant rod to your prosthetic tooth. On the same day, digital scans are completed for CEREC® crowns, which will serve as your artificial replacement tooth. When CEREC® is used, the crowns can be placed on the same day that scans are taken. 

After dental implant surgery, once the abutment and crown are placed, it will be your responsibility to extend your dental implants’ lifespan by performing diligent dental implants care for your new tooth or teeth. 

 

Proper Dental Implants Care

With proper dental care, a dental implant can last for decades, making it an economical, one-time investment to better your oral health and improve your speech. How long it lasts and how well it ages all depends on the level of care you provide. Since there is no natural tooth structure involved in an implant, it’s impossible for decay to occur. But the success of your dental implant surgery is at risk if a periodontal infection called implantitis occurs. 

Implantitis is the inflammation of hard and soft tissue around the implant site and can host the same harmful bacteria that destroys natural teeth and causes decay. If left unresolved, the bacteria can form a hard deposit that damages the gum and bone around the implant. This condition needs to be treated by a dentist and can cause your implant to fail. 

Proper dental care decreases the risk of implantitis and increases your chances of a successful implant. Here are a few ways to increase the lifespan of a dental implant

 

Brush Twice Daily 

Developing an effective brushing routine to remove plaque is essential to preventing peri-implantitis. Brushing twice daily, ensuring you clean around and under the crown is a good place to start. It’s a good idea to use a soft nylon brush to clean your teeth when you have a dental implant because toothbrushes with hard bristles might scratch the prosthesis’ surface. 

 

Keep Up With Regular Dentist Appointments 

Continue to visit your dentist every six months for regular cleanings and check-ups. This allows your dentist to monitor any concerning developments and treat them early. It will also ensure plaque is sufficiently removed at least twice annually. 

 

Use Mouthwash 

No matter how committed you are to brushing twice a day, there may be parts of your teeth that the brush just can’t reach or clean sufficiently. For proper dental implants care, consider using a mouthwash after brushing. This helps kill any remaining harmful bacteria to keep your implant clean. 

 

Protective Appliances 

If you grind or clench your teeth in your sleep, speak with your dentist about getting fitted for a nightguard or retainer. Protection from pressure and grinding overnight can prevent damage to the crown tooth and increase its lifespan. 

 

Avoid Smoking 

Smoking is bad for your natural teeth, but it can harm your dental implants as well. Nicotine can slow down the healing process by restricting the flow of blood to the implant site. 

 

tips dental implants care sydney nswFloss Daily 

Flossing around your dental implant daily is critical to removing food waste and preventing harmful bacteria from gathering on, under or around the crown.

It’s vital to use floss that doesn’t leave particles or strands behind, which could contribute to gum irritation or infection. Your dentist can recommend what floss to use. 

 

Use an Oral Irrigator 

If you have concerns about floss fraying and getting stuck around your implants, you can opt for an oral irrigator as part of your dental care routine instead. Oral irrigators like the Waterpik® Water Flosser Oral irrigators aim a jet of water at your teeth to allow you to flush out food particles and bacteria around them. This method is less abrasive than flossing, but it is also not as effective at preventing plaque buildup. The decision to use an oral irrigator should be made in consultation with your dentist. 

 

Use a Low-Abrasive Toothpaste

Once you have a dental implant, consider switching to a toothpaste that doesn’t contain abrasive ingredients that can mark or scratch the implant. This means products that do not contain stain removal agents or baking soda. 

 

Make Your Smile Last 

For many people, tooth implants’ appeal is their permanence and the potential for a one-time investment. By committing to diligent dental implants care, you can extend your dental implants’ lifespan, saving you time and money down the road. For more information about replacing missing teeth, contact No Gaps Dental at (02) 8806 0227

 

 

Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. 

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