Dental implants are the tooth replacement procedure of choice for dentists and patients alike. Supported by biocompatible screws placed in the jaw bone, the crowns attached to the implants look like natural teeth. Even better, the implants serve to prevent bone loss and keep adjacent teeth from shifting into gaps. In other words, dental implants look and function like natural teeth. But you do need to take good care of your implants to ensure they last as intended. Here’s everything to know about how to clean dental implants.
How to Clean a Single Dental Implant
It is as important to clean your implant as thoroughly as you clean natural teeth to prevent excessive buildup of plaque which can lead to gum disease. Single dental implants are easy to care for, though you should switch to a soft-bristled manual or electric toothbrush. Toothbrushes with extremely hard or rigid bristles can irritate your gum.
You should also select non-abrasive toothpaste. Your dental crown attached to the implant is made of very sturdy material, but you don’t want to use gritty pastes that can scratch the surface. If you’re not sure of the best type to use, ask the dentist who performed your dental implant surgery. Brush using short strokes on all teeth, including your implant. Aim to brush at least twice a day for two minutes.
To floss, create a c-shape with the floss, and slide it up and down several times to remove any debris that may get stuck between your implant and other teeth. If you struggle to reach all areas around your implant, you may consider using a water flosser, or WaterPik. Aim to floss once daily. Discuss this further with your hygienist if needed.
How to Clean an Implant Supported Bridge
To clean an implant-supported bridge you will need to brush twice daily. You should use a soft-bristled toothbrush, to thoroughly brush all surfaces of your teeth, bridge, and implant. Aim to brush for two minutes each time, three times per day.
Flossing with a bridge can be a little tricky, so it’s best to use tools designed for them. Flossing devices such as threaders are designed to help you to clean under your bridge. Likewise, special interproximal brushes, which are sometimes referred to as Christmas tree brushes can help clean under an implant-supported bridge. Dental picks and WaterPiks can also help clean around and beneath a bridge.
How to Clean Implant Supported Dentures
Your dentures need to be cleaned every day to remove food remnants. Use a soft bristled brush to brush the dentures and to gently brush your gums. Water flossing is also helpful to clean other debris from between the gums and your dentures. Consider looking for a WaterPik that comes with a small brush that can also be used on your dentures. You should also see your dentist regularly for gum cleaning, denture cleaning, and to check on the health of your gums and implants. Dentures should never be left dry when out of mouth; always keep in a denture soaking solution.
Learn More About Dental Implants in Concord
To learn more about replacing missing teeth with dental implants, or to schedule a regular exam and cleaning, contact Dr. Laurie Rosato’s friendly team today by calling 603-228-9276. You may also request an appointment online.