How to Care For Your Dental Implants
Dental implants provide a long-lasting, natural-looking alternative to traditional dentures. Just like you would care for your natural teeth, it’s important to take proper care of your dental implants to ensure long-term success.
Dental Implant Care
For the most part, you’ll care for your new dental implants the same way you would your regular teeth. Proper maintenance, including regular brushing and flossing on a daily basis and regular dental visits, will ensure your implants stay healthy and functional.
Recovery After Dental Implant Surgery
If you’ve just had your dental implant surgery, it’s important to give your mouth time to heal. Your dentist will provide specific instructions, but in general, you should follow these tips during the healing process:
- Rest: Take it easy for the first few days after surgery. Avoid strenuous activities and rest as much as possible.
- Ice: Apply ice packs to your face for 20 minutes at a time to reduce swelling.
- Pain management: Take any pain medication as prescribed by your dentist. You may also take over-the-counter pain medicine such as ibuprofen to manage any discomfort.
- Soft foods: Stick to soft foods like mashed potatoes, soup, and yogurt for the first few days after surgery.
- Oral hygiene routine: Brush your teeth gently, but avoid the surgical site.
- Don’t smoke: Be sure to avoid smoking after your oral surgery. This can interfere with the healing process and compromise the implant health.
- Follow-up appointments: Attend any follow-up appointments with your dentist to monitor your progress.
Good Oral Hygiene Habits at Home
Once you’ve healed from your dental implant surgery, it’s important to establish good oral hygiene practices at home. These habits will help keep your implants healthy and prevent any complications.
- Brush twice daily: Brush your teeth twice daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Be sure to brush the implant surfaces, gums, and tongue. You can use a manual toothbrush or an electric toothbrush, as long as you choose something with a soft brush head.
- Floss daily: Use dental floss or a water flosser at least once a day to remove any food particles and plaque buildup from between your teeth and around your dental implants. This will ensure that your gum tissue stays healthy and free from gum disease.
- Use an antibacterial mouthwash: Use an antibacterial mouthwash to help kill any bacteria in your mouth that can cause infection.
- Visit your dentist regularly: Visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. They can help monitor the health of your implants and detect any potential issues early on.
Healthy Lifestyle Habits
In addition to good oral hygiene habits, there are a few lifestyle habits that can help keep your dental implants healthy and strong.
- Avoid tobacco products: Smoking and other tobacco products can increase your risk of infection and other complications. If you use tobacco, consider quitting to protect your oral health.
- Eat a healthy diet: Eating a balanced diet can help provide the nutrients your body needs to maintain healthy teeth and gums.
- Drink plenty of water: Drinking water can help rinse away any food particles and bacterial growth in your mouth.
Preventive Maintenance Appointments
You’ll need to schedule preventive maintenance appointments with Dr. Nelson at least every six months to ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy after your implants have been placed. If you have risk factors for periodontal disease, you may need professional cleanings more often. Regular implant maintenance visits will allow Dr. Nelson to ensure your oral health stays on track.
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If you suffer from gum disease, or if you simply want to do more to maintain your oral health, contact Custom Periodontics and Implantology at Fort Worth, TX, today to schedule an appointment!