A child’s loose tooth can be an adorable keepsake when it falls out. A permanent tooth lost to decay, trauma, or another cause is an emergency no matter how old you are. It can immediately start changing the shape of your face and affecting your ability to eat and speak.
Implants are one of the most durable tooth replacement options with a success rate of up to 97%. They can last a lifetime, but only if they receive proper care.
Read on for three tips on how to care for dental implants.
1. Keep Up With Your Dental Hygiene
Getting a dental implant is the time to improve your oral care routine. Brush twice a day. Use mouthwash and floss once a day.
You may need to switch toothbrushes. Look for a nylon brush with soft bristles that won’t scratch the surface of the implant. Find non-abrasive toothpaste. Try floss that’s designed for implants or use a Waterpik. Use antimicrobial, alcohol-free mouthwash without intensive flavors like mint or cinnamon.
2. Avoid Harmful Habits
Knowing how to care for dental implants means knowing what to do and what not to do. Keep hard or sticky foods out of your diet. They can damage your implant and the surrounding teeth.
A few examples of what to avoid include:
- Hard candies
- Dried or hard fruits
- Potato chips
- Hardshell tacos
- Crusty bread
Smoking and drinking alcohol never help your oral health but are especially harmful in the first six months of dental implant maintenance. They slow down the healing process and increase the risk of gum disease, infection, and other complications.
Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is another habit that affects up to 40% of the population. It’s often done while sleeping, with the prevalence of awake bruxism at 11%.
Grinding can damage your implant and break down your other healthy teeth. Go to a dentist for advice if you realize it’s affecting you. They may prescribe a protective device such as a night guard.
3. Get Regular Dental Visits
See your dentist for regular dental implant care at least twice a year. This includes professional cleanings and exams. Go see them immediately if anything feels out of place.
The dentist can take a look and ensure that it’s healing well and staying in place. They’ll check for problems with surrounding teeth and signs of gum disease or periodontitis. They’ll spot any problems early before they become extensive or life-threatening. They make sure that the cost of dental implants and the time you put into caring for them is a worthy investment.
Where Can I Learn How to Care For Dental Implants and Other Procedures?
Learning how to care for dental implants increases the lifespan of one of the best options for replacing a permanent tooth. Brush and floss it with non-abrasive products. Avoid harmful habits such as eating hard foods, smoking, drinking, and grinding your teeth. Visit your dentist regularly to spot issues early.
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