Dental implants are a common restoration for missing teeth and offer a natural-looking result. However, dental implants are more likely to develop dental issues than natural issues.
This makes their maintenance and cleaning slightly different from caring for natural teeth. With proper maintenance, you can save money and time and prevent discomfort. If you have dental implants, ensure you floss and brush below your gum line to protect your bone structure, securing the prosthetic tooth in your mouth.
Brushing properly protects weak crowns from cracks and chips. Ensure you avoid lifestyle factors that increase the risk of cracking and chipping the teeth to make your dental implant in Turkey last longer.
Why do dental implants fall out?
To understand how to care for your dental implants properly, you need to understand why dental implants fall out, fail or break. A well-fitted and designed dental implant will only fall out for two reasons: the implant tooth breaks, or the implant gets dislodged from the jaw.
A dental implant dislodged from the jaw often damages the bone and gums surrounding the implant, but tooth crown breakage occurs from a weak artificial tooth.
Although other causes of implant failure, like an allergy to the implant material, can occur, it is rare.
Stopping dental implants from getting loose by preventing gum disease
Gum disease or periodontitis of the gums surrounding the implants is often the cause of dental implants coming out. The other causes of dental implants coming out include the body reacting to the implant and improper placement, but they rarely occur.
Gum disease results from bacteria in the mouth accumulating at the gum line, the area where the gum meets the teeth. The accumulated bacteria excrete acids that may cause receding gums, exposing the teeth root and the bone holding the root in place.
Over time, the acid also wears down the bone supporting the teeth. Gum disease is the most common tooth loss cause.
Since your jawbone holds the dental implant, bone degeneration from acid excreted by bacteria causes the implanted tooth to become loosely embedded in the jaw, a condition called Peri-implantitis. This process causes dental implants to become loose and fall out.
Gum diseases are quite common, affecting most people at least once in their lifetime. Gum disease causes the natural tooth to be loose and has the same effect on dental implants. However, because dental implants didn’t naturally grow out from the jaw, the implanted tooth will likely fall out faster than the natural tooth.
This makes caring for your implanted tooth to prevent gum disease on the tooth. You can take care of your implanted tooth with the following.
- Floss everyday
Accumulated bacteria in the mouth can result in tooth and bone loss when the bacteria affect under the gum line. When bacteria accumulate under the gum line, regular brushing cannot remove them.
Flossing removes bacteria under the gum line; because bacteria multiply quickly, you should floss daily. If flossing is an issue, you can use interdental brushes or an electric water flosser to remove bacteria and plaque under your gum line.
If you do not floss, you can’t expect not to have gum disease.
- Pay extra attention to brushing implanted teeth
Bacteria and plaque tend to accumulate first on the teeth, which makes brushing implanted teeth important to prevent plaque accumulation that also affects the gum line.
Brushing your teeth properly doesn’t mean brushing firmly, as this can wear down your enamel. Brushing the teeth properly involves gently brushing while ensuring you clean all parts of the teeth, inkling the base that meets the gums and back of your tooth.
Combine brushing properly with flossing to prevent gum disease and other dental issues.
- Stop smoking
Smoking cigarettes increases the risk of gum disease, reduces the amount of saliva in your mouth and suppresses the immune system, which increases the risk of infection.
About 50% of people with gum disease are smokers, even with smokers accounting for only 18% of the general population.
The link between gum disease and smoking is clear, and it is best to quit smoking to ensure your dental implants do not fail or fall out.
- Visit the dentist immediately if you notice gum issues
Gum is often difficult to identify, but immediate treatment is important because the infection spreads quickly.
Common symptoms of gum disease include receding gums, bad breath, bleeding gum when you brush and sore gums. Ensure you visit your dentist immediately if you notice these symptoms.
How to prevent breakage of the implanted tooth
High-quality dental crowns should last long, but regardless of the technique and material used to make artificial teeth, they cannot be as strong as your natural teeth. This means you need to take extra care of your implanted tooth to make it last a lifetime.
The following can help make your implanted tooth last longer.
- Avoid eating overly strong, chewy or crunchy
Do not bite into hard foods as they can break your natural and implanted tooth, and the risk of tooth breaking increases as you grow older.
Implant teeth aren’t as strong as your natural teeth; if anything can break them, it will do the same to your implanted tooth. If you want to eat crunchy foods, try chewing on the side without an implant.
- Reduce the risk of dental trauma Dental trauma is damage to the teeth resulting from a forceful impact on the mouth. Avoiding trauma is important because your implanted tooth can become damaged faster than your natural teeth. You can wear a mouth guard when playing contact sports to reduce the risk of the implanted tooth breaking. Wearing a mouth guard is particularly important if you replace your front teeth.
- Manage teeth grinding
Teeth grinding wears down the teeth and account for most cases of teeth getting cracked or chipped. Most teeth grinding is at night, and you may not realise the damage it causes to your teeth.
Dental implants are more likely to get damaged from teeth grinding, but you can protect your teeth by wearing a special dental appliance while sleeping. This dental appliance is discreet but effectively reduces teeth grinding and prevents damage to the teeth.
You can also reduce teeth grinding by minimising stress and ensuring you are hydrated, especially at night.
How to care for new dental implants
The initial period after placing dental implants in the tooth is important to the procedure’s success. In addition to the above, for taking care of your dental implants, you need to take certain precautionary measures immediately after fitting the implants to prevent infection in the treated areas.
These precautions include:
- Floss around the dental implant areas
Gum disease can damage your dental implants, and avoiding this condition at all costs is necessary, especially in the first weeks after the procedure.
After placing dental implants, you will have a temporary tooth placed on it to fill the gap from the missing tooth until your jawbone integrates with the implant.
You can use a water flosser or interdental brushes, if you dislike flossing. Only brushing your teeth will not prevent gum disease.
- Avoid smoking Smoking can cause infectious diseases and reduce your immune system’s function. Ensure you completely avoid smoking in the first few months after dental implant surgery.
- Protect your immune system
Dental implant surgery is a major procedure, but many people do not consider it one. After dental implant surgery, your body needs to work extra hard to recover, so you should fortify your immune system.
You can enhance your immune system by avoiding stress-inducing activities, eating healthy foods, getting enough sleep and avoiding alcohol. Taking these steps will help prevent infections.
Your dentist may prescribe taking antibiotics to prevent infections after your dental implant surgery.
How long can a dental implant last with proper care?
There is no definite answer to how long your implants will last, but it depends on the quality of the implant (the materials used and how the dentist places them) and how you take care of the implants.
Dental implants will last for at least 20 years with proper care, but some people have them for a lifetime.
Ensure you ask the dentist about the implant brand they use and research its quality, including the dentist’s expertise. Consider opting for a surgeon with post-graduate training in dental implant surgery and at least five years of experience in regular implant surgery.