How to Take Care of My Dental Implants

How to Take Care of My Dental Implants By Dr. Jon ( Junyi ) Ho | December 22, 2022

Have you recently had dental implants placed and are now wondering how to take care of them properly?

Dental implants can be a great way to replace teeth lost due to trauma and tooth decay. However, it’s important to take proper care of them, so they last as long as possible.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss tips on properly caring for implants. Please note that everyone’s situation is different, so consult your dentist for specific instructions on how to take care of your implants. Keep reading to learn more!

young female patient having dental procedure orthodontist

How Do You Clean Dental Implants?

When caring for dental implants, the rule is to clean them just like your natural teeth. That means brushing twice daily, flossing once a day, and rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash daily. Here are a few specific tips for cleaning implants:

  1. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and round motions when cleaning implants. Be sure to brush gently around the implant abutment (the metal connector that attaches the implant to the artificial tooth). 
  2. Floss using unwaxed floss or implant-specific floss in an upward motion. Start at the gum line and move the floss up toward the top of the tooth. If you’re having trouble flossing around the abutment, try using a floss threader or interdental brush. Most implant dentists recommend water flossers or oral irrigators over dental floss.
  3. Rinse with a gentle mouthwash formulated specifically for dental implants. You can find these at most drugstores or online. You may also use warm salt water. Avoid harsh mouthwashes that contain alcohol, as they can dry out your gums and lead to irritation.
  4. Use non-abrasive toothpaste when brushing. Avoid any formulas that contain harsh chemicals or abrasives. Abrasive products can scratch and damage the implant surface and cause irritation. Look for a non or low-abrasive toothpaste for sensitive teeth or oral care.

Following these simple care instructions can keep your dental implants clean, healthy, and looking great for many years!

How Often Do Dental Implants Need to Be Cleaned?

While the care for each case may vary slightly, it is generally recommended that people clean their dental implants at least twice a day. A good oral hygiene routine means regular brushing after every meal, flossing, and using an antibacterial mouthwash or rinsing with warm salt water.

Additionally, it would help if you have regular dental appointments for professional cleanings and checkups. While the frequency of cleaning may vary depending on the individual, most dental care professionals recommend getting implants cleaned at least twice a year. This helps remove any plaque or tartar built up on the implant and allows your dentist to check for any signs of damage or wear.

By taking good care of your dental implants, you can help them last a lifetime.

Can Food Get Under Dental Implants?

Food particles like popcorn kernels, nuts, and hard candy can easily get stuck under dental implants, so it’s important to be careful when eating hard, crunchy, and sticky foods. A soft food diet is highly recommended.

If food gets under your implants and isn’t removed, it can lead to dental problems, including infection. To avoid these, you should always practice good oral hygiene habits such as brushing and flossing regularly and visiting your dentist for regular checkups.

Are Dental Implants Prone to Cavities?

Dental implants are not susceptible to cavities. They are made of titanium, a very strong and durable material. However, even though implants cannot develop cavities, it is still important to take care of them.

Poor oral and dental hygiene can lead to gum disease or periodontal disease, which can cause dental implant failure. Therefore, it is important to practice good dental implant care. Brush and floss your dental implants just as you would your natural teeth.

How Can I Care For My Dental Implants?

Proper care and maintenance for implants are part of the treatment plan as it is critical to maintaining their longevity and function. Here are four dos of implant care:

  1. Do keep your implants clean. When cleaning implants, brush, and floss just as you would your natural teeth. This will help to remove plaque and bacteria, which are not good for dental health, and can lead to infection if left unchecked.
  2. Do see your dentist regularly. Just as with natural teeth, it is important to see your dentist regularly for checkups and dental cleanings. A dental specialist can spot any early problems and take steps to prevent further damage.
  3. Do eat a healthy diet. A healthy diet is good for your overall health, including your teeth and gums. Avoid sugary and acidic foods, which can damage dental enamel. While you can still eat your favourite foods, it is highly recommended to stick to soft foods to avoid damaging the implant.
  4. Do quit smoking. Smoking can cause reduced blood flow, leading to various oral health problems, including gum disease, a leading cause of tooth loss. If you smoke, quitting is the best way to protect your teeth, gums, and overall health.

What Can Damage Dental Implants?

It’s important to take special care of your implants to make them last longer. There are a few things you should avoid doing if you want to keep your implants in good condition.

Here are four things you shouldn’t do if you have dental implants:

  1. Don’t neglect your oral hygiene. Just like real teeth, dental implants need to be kept clean. Be sure to brush, and floss regularly, and see your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings.
  2. Don’t use your teeth as tools. Avoid using your teeth to open packages or bottles, as this can cause damage to the implant.
  3. Don’t smoke. Smoking can cause damage to the implant and increase the risk of dental implant failure.
  4. Don’t chew on hard objects. Chewing on hard objects, such as ice or candy, can damage the implant or cause it to come loose.

What Is the Average Lifespan of Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a popular choice for tooth replacement, as they provide a natural look and feel while preventing bone loss. They are also quite strong and can last many years with proper care.

The average lifespan of dental implants is about 25 years. Of course, this can vary depending on the individual and how well they care for their implants.

Implants require regular cleaning and care, just like natural teeth. Proper care will help extend your implants’ lifespan and keep them in good condition.

Final Thoughts

While dental implants are a durable and long-lasting solution for missing teeth, they require proper care for them to last a long time. Dental implant care is essential to its success.

Brushing and flossing regularly are important to keep plaque and tartar buildup at bay. Quitting smoking and drinking alcohol can help protect your tooth implants and your health.

If you want more information on reliable tooth replacement options such as dental implants and want to book an appointment, visit our website or call Darch Dental Centre today. We would be happy to help you get the beautiful smile you deserve!

Frequently Asked questions

Dental implant procedures have a high success rate. But just like any form of dental treatment, it carries risks because they are considered an invasive procedure. One of which is implant failure.

The signs of a failing implant could include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling around the dental implant
  • Loose teeth
  • Persistent bad breath or taste in the mouth
  • Receding gums

If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your dentist so they can evaluate your dental implants, provide medications as necessary, and determine if the implants need to be replaced.

It depends on the type of work you do and how extensive your surgical procedure is. Generally, as part of a dental implant care plan, it is recommended to wait a few days before returning to work after dental surgery. If you have concerns or questions about when to return to work, talk with your dentist.

In some cases, it is possible to get a dental implant without bone grafting surgery. This depends on several factors, including the type of implant being placed and the amount of available jaw bone in the area where the implant is being placed. Your dentist will evaluate your situation and determine if you can be a candidate for an implant despite not having bone graft surgery.

The dental implant treatment process takes several months because the body needs time to heal and adapt to the new implant.

After the initial placement of the implant, it can take anywhere from three to six months for osseointegration (the process in which the implant fuses with the jawbone) to occur. Once this process has been completed, the abutment (the piece that connects the implant to a dental crown) is placed, and the implant crown can then be secured. The process of osseointegration helps the implant achieve a solid foundation, which allows for proper function and durability.

The recovery and healing process is different for every patient. However, the entire dental implant treatment process can take anywhere from three to nine months or even longer.

Dr. Jon ( Junyi ) Ho

Dr. Jon is a Perth-based dentist who graduated with a Bachelor of Dental Science in 2005 from the University of Western Australia. He has worked at a range of dental practices, including being a partner and principal dentist for a group of five dental surgeries in Sydney. Dr. Jon has been practising for over a decade in the northern suburbs of Perth. He provides treatment for patients in Darch, Madeley, Landsdale, Kingsway, Kingsley, Marangaroo, Alexander Heights, Wangara, Ellenbrook, and others.

Related Blogs

The Components of a Dental Implant: What You Need to Know

We all want beautiful smiles, which is why dental implants are slowly becoming one of the most popular options for those looking to replace missing teeth. But what are dental implants, and how do they work? In this blog post, we'll break down the different components of a dental implant...

Can Your Health Fund Cover Your Dental Implant?

Dental implants are an innovative technology that involves placing titanium posts that act as artificial tooth roots into the jaw bone. They serve as a foundation for replacement teeth, ideal for those seeking a way to fill gaps and help prevent bone loss. However, dental implants do not come cheap....

What to Eat After a Dental Implant Procedure

Having just gotten a dental implant to replace a missing tooth, you may be wondering if you'll have to make any changes to your diet. It's normal to ask yourself this question. After all, dental implants are a costly investment, and you would want to make sure they last for...