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Caring For Implants: What’s Different?

 

As anyone who has a dental implant knows, they’re a huge game changer for your smile. If you’re the proud new owner of one or more implants let our team at Anderson Dental Care be the first to congratulate you on your new smile!

Among all the excitement of new dental implants you might be wondering what you need to worry about. Are they hard to care for? Are there problems separate from those of natural teeth? The simplest explanation is that they’re easy to care for and aren’t really at all different from natural teeth.

That’s where the simple explanation ends, though.

Implant Care: The In-Depth Explanation

Yes, they’re easy to care for – all you need to do is brush your teeth twice a day and floss nightly, but you have to be incredibly disciplined about caring for your new implants or things could go seriously wrong. While dental implants act, look, and feel just like real teeth they actually bond to your jaw and are supported in a very different way than natural teeth.

Let’s start by considering a natural tooth. It’s made of bone, and has a crown above the gums and a root beneath it. The stability of a natural tooth comes from the strong bond it has with your periodontal ligament, which is a thin layer of tissue that separates your tooth from the bone of your jaw.

The periodontal ligament is made up of a bunch of fibers that stretch between your tooth and bone, forming an incredibly strong bond that’s hard to break. Both your bone and teeth are porous, allowing the ligament to get a strong grip that runs from the root of your tooth all the way to the gumline. There isn’t any part of the tooth under the gums that isn’t held firm by the periodontal ligament.

Now let’s consider a dental implant. It’s titanium and is meant to bond strongly to your bone through a process called osseointegration. Titanium is the choice for most all surgical implants throughout the body because it is able to integrate with bone and form an incredibly tight, permanent seal.

Your implant bonds directly with the bone, meaning that there isn’t any periodontal ligament surrounding an implant tooth. As you go up from the root of the implant you come to the abutment, which is an attachment that allows us to connect a crown or bridge to the implant itself. Were this a natural tooth there would be ligament there for the abutment to bond to, but there isn’t.

Since implants, abutments, and crowns can’t bond to periodontal ligament your gums take over. They’re able to connect to your implant instead, but the seal the form is much weaker – more like suction cups than woven fibers. Guess what that means? Less protection from oral bacteria for your dental implants.

Keeping Dental Implants Safe From Harm

Hopefully that explanation didn’t scare you – what it really means is that you can easily keep dental implants safe and healthy for years with just a little TLC. Proper oral hygiene is essential to a healthy mouth, and it’s even more important for a healthy implant. Following these steps will keep yours healthy without a problem

  • Brush twice a day for at least two minutes. Don’t brush too hard – it can cause damage to your gums which can make it easier for bacteria to get inside. Hold your brush at a 45 degree angle to your gums so that you’re sweeping away all the plaque with the least amount of force.
  • Floss every evening, being sure to get down into the gumline to pull out any plaque that has managed to get down inside. This is essential if you want to keep teeth or implants healthy!
  • If you truly want your implants – and teeth – to stay in the best condition possible you can’t forget to schedule regular dental appointments at our Cincinnati office. The only way you can be sure bacteria isn’t sneaking into hard-to-clean spots is with regular professional care!

 

Implants Changed Your Life – Keep Them For Just As Long!

The investment you made to find a better life is one you want to keep. Don’t let your dental implants fall prey to the ravages of oral bacteria – let us help you keep them healthy and clean for life.

If you have questions about dental implant hygiene don’t hesitate to contact Anderson Dental Care at (513) 231-7755 – we’re always available to help answer any questions you have!

 

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