The Proper Care of Implants
Are missing teeth causing you to avoid your favorite foods, making it difficult to speak clearly, or causing you to hide your smile due to embarrassment? A dental implant is the treatment of choice for many when it comes time to replace missing teeth. Some, however, are concerned about the care and maintenance of implants. Let’s address those concerns to see if dental implants are right for you. That care actually begins before the implant surgery takes place.
For the best dental implant results, starting with healthy gums is important. The gums should be pink, not bright red, and firm, without signs of inflammation. If the tooth loss was a result of gum disease, that will need to be treated prior to the implant. In severe cases where there has been bone loss, it may be necessary to perform a bone graft to establish a base for the implant.
The best way to avoid gum disease is to exercise a proper brushing and flossing routine and have regular checkups for examination and cleaning.
Post-Surgery: Near-Term Care
An implant is surgically placed in the jaw, which means that immediately following the surgery, the implant area may be slightly sore and swollen. You should eat soft foods and drink clear liquids for the first few days post-surgery. Infection is a main reason implants fail. Saltwater rinses can help ward off infection, and if you’ve been given antibiotics, you’ll want to take the entire prescribed course as a precaution.
Scheduling regular checkups is necessary to maintain good oral health. This is especially true if you’ve had an implant so that the implant and surrounding gum tissue can be monitored. Brush just as you would your “normal” teeth. Using a soft toothbrush and low abrasive toothpaste can help you avoid scratching the surface of the implant. When you floss, use unwaxed or implant-specific floss. If the implant is in a hard-to-reach location, a water flosser is a useful tool.
Should you notice any redness, swelling, or pain, make an appointment with us as soon as possible. If there is an infection, prompt action makes treatment easier and more effective.
Schedule Regular Dental Checkups
Dental implants are a safe, permanent way to replace missing teeth, and the care for them is not much different than for your natural teeth. For your implants to last a lifetime, be sure to practice good oral hygiene, which includes regular exams and cleaning. We serve patients in Rossville, California, and the surrounding areas, so contact our office today to find out if a dental implant is right for you!