When you decide to get dental implants to replace missing or decayed teeth, you will be investing in yourself. Dental implants are expensive and the process to finally get your new, beautiful teeth is long and can take up to a year. With all this considered, maintaining your implants in good shape is critical. At Pacific Modern Dentistry, we will give you all the tools you need so your dental implants can last you many, many years.
Can Dental Implants Fail?
While our team of experienced dentists and staff does everything to prevent dental implants from failing, not maintaining them properly can cause you serious problems. There are two types of problems that can cause the implants to fail:
Peri-Implant Mucositis, which is the inflammation of gum tissue surrounding the implant.
Peri-Implantatis, which can cause bone loss.
To prevent this from happening you must have regular cleanings and exams, and practice good oral hygiene habits at home like you would with your natural tooth. Sometimes this is hard for certain patients who have neglected their oral health which resulted in tooth loss and the need for implants. It is hard to break bad habits, but we try to educate our patients as much as we can on how critical it is to maintain your dental implants. Moreover, our hygienists use special plastic tools to probe around the gumline when you come in for checkups to prevent damaging the soft tissue if necessary.
Plaque accumulation around implants is normal and in rare instances could cause calculus formations. When this happens, we usually suggest scaling. Our trained hygienists can use metal instruments to do this carefully and expertly.
Signs of Failing Implants
Bleeding when you brush is not normal. We can also identify problems with your implants if we probe the gums and you bleed, which could be a sign of peri-implant mucositis and needs to be treated immediately. We will clean and disinfect the area. We will also use probing instruments to determine how deep the infection inside the gumline is. If the bleeding persists after treatment, it could be due to more severe problems even if there is no bone loss.
Caring for Your Dental Implants
We can’t emphasize enough how important it is to have good oral hygiene habits at home. Brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush twice a day and especially flossing will help you prevent any problems with your implants. Even though the materials used are designed to work in tandem with your soft tissue and bones, sometimes your body produces excessive plaque which can damage your implants and create an infection that can make them fail.
Visiting us for a thorough checkup and cleaning is also extremely important. During those visits, our dentist will examine the implant closely and look for any signs of rejection or failure. With proper maintenance at home and regular visits to our office, your dental implants can last you for many years.
If you are thinking about getting dental implants and have any further questions about caring for them or any other topic related to this procedure, please call Pacific Modern Dentistry at (206) 607-9822.