Caring for your dental implants is important to help them last a lifetime. With dental implants, keeping the gum tissue and surrounding jaw bone healthy is the top priority, along with caring for your natural teeth. Dr. Daryle J. Mahnke is a Bay City, MI implant dentist dedicated to helping you keep your smile healthy and beautiful for life. Learn more about how to care for your new smile and risk factors for implants.
Can Dental Implants Get Infected?
Because dental implants are made of metal or other biocompatible materials, the implant itself won’t decay. However, the surrounding tissue can become infected and inflamed in a condition called implantitis if the gums are not properly cared for.
Implantitis occurs when the same bacteria that cause tooth decay in natural teeth coat the implant, forming dental calculus. This calculus is a rough, hard deposit that eats away at the supporting gum and bone surrounding the implant, making it less stable in the jaw. Once calculus has formed, it cannot be removed by brushing or flossing and must be removed by a dental hygienist.
How To Keep Dental Implants Healthy
Keep your implants healthy by maintaining the same oral hygiene routine you’d use on your natural teeth. Brush your teeth twice a day, and be sure to floss around the implant to remove plaque that can harden around the implant. We advise the following tools to keep your teeth healthy:
- Small, soft, ADA-approved manual toothbrush or an electric brush
- Low-abrasive, tartar-control toothpaste
- Dental floss for cleaning around the implant
- Antimicrobial mouth rinses
Not only should you perform dental hygiene at home daily, but be sure to schedule regular visits to Dr. Mahnke. It is recommended that you have a professional exam and cleaning every 3-6 months. You should also have your dental implants examined by X-ray annually.
What Happens If I Don’t Take Care Of My Implants?
Implants can develop issues without consistent daily care. Bleeding is usually the earliest sign of a problem. This condition is known as mucositis. The current research suggests that this may be successfully treated and is reversible if caught early. Unfortunately if it progresses to bone loss, also known as peri-implantitis, that is not a reversible condition. If peri-implantitis is not treated it can lead to advanced bone loss and the implant loosening or even falling out.
Dental Implants in Bay City, MO
If you think you would benefit from implants due to missing or broken teeth or need the implants you already have inspected, Dr. Mahnke and his team are ready to help. Please call us at 989-272-2478 or schedule a consultation online today!