Dental implants are a remarkable solution for replacing missing teeth, offering natural-looking and functional teeth that can last a lifetime with proper care. However, like natural teeth, dental implants require regular cleaning and maintenance to ensure their longevity and your oral health. Here’s how to care for your dental implants to keep your smile healthy and radiant.
Why should you clean your dental implants?
You might think that just because your dental implants are artificial teeth, you don’t need to clean them. Dental implants are surgically implanted into your jawbone, making them a permanent and stable solution for tooth replacement. However, while the artificial tooth (crown) attached to the implant may not decay, the surrounding gums and bone are still susceptible to infection, inflammation and disease. Proper cleaning is crucial to prevent issues such as peri-implantitis (inflammation around the implant) and gum disease.
Cleaning tools and products to use
Before you get started, gather the right tools and products:
- Soft-bristled toothbrush: Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles to avoid scratching the implant or damaging the gums.
- Low-abrasive toothpaste: Use a low-abrasive toothpaste to prevent scratching the implant crown or abutment.
- Floss: Dental floss or interdental brushes are necessary for cleaning between your dental implants.
- Antiseptic mouthwash: An antiseptic mouthwash can help reduce bacteria and plaque around the implant area.
- Water flosser: A water flosser can be an effective tool for cleaning around your dental implants, especially in hard-to-reach areas.
- Dental picks: Dental picks or soft plastic-tipped instruments can be helpful for gentle cleaning.
Dr. Mike and your Cleveland Implant Institute care team can recommend the appropriate tools for your needs.
The cleaning process
- Daily brushing: Brush your dental implants at least twice a day, just as you would your natural teeth. Gently clean all sides of the implant crown and the surrounding gum tissue.
- Use low-abrasive toothpaste: Choose a toothpaste recommended by your dentist, preferably one that’s low-abrasive to prevent scratching the implant. Avoid using baking soda or abrasive toothpaste.
- Flossing: Floss or use interdental brushes to clean the spaces between your dental implants and natural teeth. Be gentle to avoid damaging the gums.
- Water flosser: If you have a water flosser, use it to clean around the implants and along the gumline. The gentle stream of water can dislodge food particles and reduce plaque buildup.
- Mouthwash: Rinse with an antiseptic mouthwash to reduce bacteria and maintain a clean, fresh feeling around your dental implants.
- Regular dental check-ups: Schedule regular dental check-ups with your dentist, who can professionally clean and inspect your dental implants for any issues.
Proper cleaning and maintenance are key for the long-term success of your dental implants. By incorporating these steps into your daily oral hygiene routine, you can ensure that your implants remain in excellent condition, preserving your beautiful new smile—and your oral health. Don’t forget to consult your Cleveland Implant Institute for personalized guidance and regular check-ups to keep your dental implants in top shape.
To learn more about dental implants, reach out to the Cleveland Implant Institute today.