Caring For Dental Implants: 3 Little-Known Tips To Help Your Implants Last

If you are getting dental implants soon, then you are likely looking forward to finally having a healthy, beautiful smile again. While dental implants serve the same function as natural teeth and even look like them, it is important to remember that they are not made of the same substances that your natural teeth are. For that reason, they need to be cared for a little differently to help them last. Here are three tips for caring for your new dental implants.

1. Skip the Flossing

You likely never thought you would hear to not floss your teeth, but dentists are now urging patients with dental implants to only floss their natural teeth and not around their implants. Flossing can disturb the connection that has been made between your gum tissue and your implant. When floss disturbs this connection and creates a gap between the implant and your gum tissue, bacteria can enter the gap and begin breeding. This can then lead to infection around the implant and even bone loss.

2. Brush Gently with a Soft Toothbrush

Everyone should brush gently and use a soft toothbrush to avoid wearing away the delicate enamel of their teeth, but this tip is especially important when you have a dental implant. Just as flossing can disturb the gum tissue surrounding your implant, brushing too firmly or using a too-stiff toothbrush around your implant can lead to a gum/implant separation, as well.

Brush all of your teeth gently with a soft toothbrush, and be extra gentle when brushing your implant.

3. Ask Your Dentist Before Using Oral-care Products with Fluoride

Fluoride is important for the health of your remaining natural teeth, but studies show that fluoride can cause corrosion of titanium metal, which is what most dental implant posts are made of. This leaves a difficult decision for you and your dentist when it comes to whether you should use fluoridated oral-care products or not after obtaining your implants.

If he or she thinks the rest of your teeth need the fluoride more than it may harm your implant, then you may still be able to use fluoride toothpaste and rinses. However, if your natural teeth are very healthy, then your dentist may recommend that you skip the fluoride or alternate usage of a fluoride toothpaste with a non-fluoridated one.

It is important to care for your dental implants at home properly to help them last. Follow these tips, and remember that proper implant care can often differ from proper care of natural teeth. Contact a local dentist, like Greeley Dental Health, for more information.