For a growing number of people, dental implants are the most valuable investment for improved oral health and appearance. After all, it's a dental procedure that makes the impossible possible — it can create a full and beautiful smile for someone who has lost some or all of their teeth. Along with that, the implants help enable the mouth to function properly like before.
Therefore, it's imperative to understand how critical it is for people to correctly use and care for dental implants. Our team at Noa Dental share the best tips for you to follow when using and caring for dental implants so you can experience all the positive benefits that they bring.
The primary purpose of dental implants is to create a frame for replacement teeth — crowns or overdentures — to be attached to, so your mouth can regain its original structure and function. With dental implants and replacement teeth, you will be able to chew your food thoroughly, create the right sounds for speech, and maintain the healthy structure of your mouth.
However, because they are not a natural part of your facial structure, there are certain activities that you should avoid to maintain their quality.
For instance, if you tend to use your teeth as cutting or opening tools (like for bags of chips or beverage bottles), this needs to stop. This is not advisable for natural teeth, but even more so for dental implants.
The general principle to follow: Do not do to your dental implants what you are not supposed to do with natural teeth.
As mentioned earlier, you should treat your dental implants as if they are originally a part of your facial structure. This means you need to implement good oral care, and that includes brushing the new replacement teeth that the implants come with and paying close attention to the condition of your gums.
To ensure the stability of your implants, it's a must to have healthy gums as well. Here are tips for properly caring for your gums:
There are special gum brushes that you can purchase from drugstores, grocers and dental supply stores. Use a gum brush to get rid of food debris that settles between teeth, as well as to massage your gums.
If you have sensitive gums and the traditional nylon floss often causes it to bleed, opt for a water flosser or oral irrigator which is similar to what's used in dental offices.
The water flosser is powerful enough to get rid of buildup between teeth as well as in that tight space where gums and teeth meet. Likewise, it can effectively clean the tops of crowns where food debris is also known to settle.
If you are prone to periodontal disease, which can be hereditary, making some dietary changes can make a whole world of difference in the condition of your gums and the quality of your implants. Eat more of the following gum health boosters:
Now, to maintain the quality of the crowns or overdentures (the replacement teeth attached to your dental implants), make sure to:
A soft-bristle toothbrush, be it a manual or an electric one, is kinder to the teeth's surface and gums.
Although crowns and overdentures will never get cavities, plaque can still build up on the area where they meet the gums, which is not only unhealthy but unsightly as well. Therefore, brush after eating.
Also, make sure to use low abrasive toothpaste. This is the best at preserving the glaze or coating that makes porcelain crowns and dentures look like natural teeth.
This type of floss will do a better job of cleaning under and around dental implants. Thanks to its stiff ends, you can insert it better between the implants around the gumline. We advise using this kind of floss straight after brushing so you can work with some leftover toothpaste and distribute fluoride around the implant and control the proliferation of oral bacteria.
Since overdentures come with their own gums, it's a healthy practice to soak them overnight. This will not only prevent them from developing a funky odor, but it can also help them maintain their shape, which is essential for a comfortable fit.
The annual replacement of these overdenture components is vital in ensuring the fit, function, and quality of overdentures. However, anytime you feel a difference in the way your overdenture feels on your implants, set an appointment with your dentist right away. Issues with the o-rings, locator caps or clips can cause complications for both your oral health and the overall quality of your implants.
If you want your dental implants to last you a really long time, see us at NOA Dental Clinic regularly for extra care. Our dental services include oral prophylaxis, deep dental cleaning (if you are prone to periodontitis), teeth whitening (so your original teeth will look as flawless as porcelain crowns), and so much more.