Compared to traditional tooth replacement treatments, dental implants offer the longest and most predictable outcome. Even though restorations like dental bridges and dentures are effective, they do have to be replaced at intermittent milestones. Most dental implants do not.
Generally speaking, a well-cared for dental implant should be able to last for the rest of your life. While there are a few exceptions, the failure rate for these fixed tooth replacements is extremely low.
However, long-term dental implant success depends on one crucial factor: home care.
Treat Your Implants Like Natural Teeth
The best way to get your dental implants to last for the rest of your life is through a dedicated oral hygiene plan. Some of the things you’ll want to do, include:
Brush Your Implants Twice a Day — Use a non-abrasive toothpaste and a soft manual or electric toothbrush at least twice per day. Although your implants can’t get cavities, they can still accumulate stain or tartar buildup. Brush for two minutes at a time, with your bristles angled slightly toward your gum tissues. Pay particular attention to the gums around your implants, as these spaces tend to collect more plaque. Your gums need to be cleaned, too!
Floss Each Implant Once a Day — Wrap your floss in a “C” shape around your implant (or tooth) then glide it up and down the side several times. Flossing will not disrupt your dental crown. Like brushing, also focus your flossing along the gumlines. Sliding the floss gently below the gums, if applicable, will disrupt plaque around your implant that might otherwise jeopardize its integrity.
Schedule Preventive Dental Cleanings — Even if you don’t have any “natural” teeth, you should still plan to have regular dental cleanings with a hygienist. During these preventative care appointments, we’ll polish away any stain, but more importantly, remove buildup that accumulates around the implant structures themselves. That way we can prevent heavy areas of tartar buildup from causing a gum or bone infection.
Communicate with Your Implant Specialist — Any time you’re noticing inflammation or redness around a dental implant, let your dental specialist know. Dr. Saunders will want to thoroughly examine the implant to screen for infections like peri-implantitis (the implant form of gum disease). Since the gums and bone around your implant need to stay healthy, always share your findings with us. We’ll work closely with you to intercept problems before they evolve into something more serious.
A Smart Investment in Your Smile
Dental implants offer the best return on investment when it comes to types of missing teeth treatments. Although something like dentures may seem the cheapest option, they can actually cost you more money over the course of your lifetime (because of relines, replacements, bone augmentation, etc.)
Instead, why not enjoy the perks of our dental implants in The Woodlands and Conroe? Find out if you qualify for this state-of-the-art smile experience. Request your consultation with Dr. Kip Saunders today to learn more!