Dental implants are a comfortable and high-quality restoration solution with excellent long-term prospects. Careful oral hygiene at home and regular follow-up care are both crucial to maintaining oral health excellence.
At Soothing Dental Care in Richmond, Virginia, Dr. Juan M. Carrillo tailors implant aftercare to you and your personal needs. We explain in detail the ongoing or new lifestyle habits that will keep your implant healthy.
Fortunately, a dental implant doesn’t require any special care. In fact, you simply treat it as one of your real teeth. The best way to maintain a long-term solution like a dental implant is by knowing how to care for your whole mouth.
The importance of dental implant care
Dental implants serve as artificial tooth roots, providing a stable anchor for an artificial tooth. Taking proper care of your implant ensures that none of your teeth becomes crooked or displaced. When there’s a gap in your mouth due to a missing tooth, the rest of your teeth will attempt to close the gap. This often leads to the shifting of teeth, which creates problems like gingivitis.
Once Dr. Carrillo successfully implants your new tooth and the rod that supports it, you’ll want to make sure you’re taking care of your oral hygiene as best you can.
Tips for dental implant maintenance
Here are some of our favorite tips for taking care of your dental implant.
Clean teeth and implants twice a day, every day. Care for your natural teeth and implant the same. Brush your teeth every day and after every meal, but at least twice a day, in the morning and in the evening. Use the correct brushing technique.
Use a soft toothbrush
Dr. Carrillo can recommend the best toothbrush for you. If you’re in the market for a new one, always choose a toothbrush with soft bristles. Medium or hard bristles can damage teeth and gums.
Brush for at least two minutes
Each tooth has several accessible tooth surfaces. To clean the entire surface of each tooth takes an average of two minutes. Dental care with an electric toothbrush makes oral hygiene easier because most models have a built-in timer.
However, if you prefer a manual toothbrush, you can time yourself by singing a song in your head or watching a few video clips from the internet. Brushing your teeth for a full two minutes ensures you get your mouth as clean as possible.
Find the right brush head
Along with a soft-bristled toothbrush head, you also want to make sure you’re using an appropriately sized head. If you aren’t sure which size is best, choose a small brush head rather than one that’s too big. With a small brush head you can also clean hard-to-reach areas.
Your gums are soft tissues that need gentle care, so don't apply too much pressure when you brush. In fact, your mouth, teeth, and gums stay healthier when you brush gently. Don’t scrub hard or use a large amount of pressure.
Instead of brushing your teeth, think about it as massaging your gums. Pressing too hard can cause receding gums or damage the protective enamel coating on your teeth. In the long run, aggressive brushing can lead to the loosening of your implant.
Change the brush head regularly
Swap out toothbrushes or change your attachments regularly. Bent and worn bristles can’t take care of your teeth as well, and bacteria can also lodge in the brush after awhile. Dr. Carrillo recommends replacing your toothbrush every three months.
Don’t forget the spaces between your teeth
Don’t just clean your visible chewing and tooth surfaces, but also get into the spaces between your teeth. You can use dental floss for this. Flossing is the only way to remove leftover food that’s stuck between teeth, causing bad breath and bacterial buildup.
Get regular check-ups and professional cleanings
Meet with Dr. Carrillo for regular checkups and cleanings at least twice a year.
Would you like to find out more about aftercare for dental implants? Schedule an appointment
at Soothing Dental Care. Call 804-201-9459 to make an appointment with our skilled team of specialists. You can also reach out by sending us a secure message online.