For those who have lost adult teeth or who need to have adult teeth extracted, dental implants can be a viable solution for restoring the appearance and function of those lost teeth. Specifically, getting a dental implant involves having an implant post permanently drilled into the supporting jaw bone, followed by "capping" the post with an artificial tooth. If you are getting dental implants in the near future, there are some important care and maintenance guidelines that you'll want to follow:
Be Aware of Signs of Infection
For starters, understand that there is always a risk of infection after your initial dental implant post is placed. Your dentist should explain the signs to watch out for after the placement of the post. Some of the most common symptoms of an infection include a foul odor, pus coming from the implant, or unexplained inflammation and/or bleeding. If you have any signs of an infection, be sure to see your dentist right away for evaluation.
Carefully Floss Around New Implants
After your implant post is successfully placed and your crown is secured, your teeth will look good as new. To reduce your risk of future infection, it's important that you not only carefully brush around your dental implants daily but that your floss diligently around them as well. Otherwise, food particles can become lodged underneath the implant and lead to bacterial infection, which can be very dangerous.
Use a Non-Abrasive Toothpaste
To keep your dental implant looking its best, you should make sure to use a non-abrasive toothpaste and well as a soft-bristle brush when you brush your teeth each day. Specifically, be sure to avoid toothpastes with baking soda, as this ingredient can scratch the surface of your dental implant and lead to staining or other visual imperfections.
Attend All Follow-Up Appointments
Your dentist will likely schedule several follow-up appointments after your dental implant is in place to ensure that everything is healing properly and that your implant is fitted to your bite correctly. These appointments are extremely important, so be sure to keep them, even if you don't notice any signs of a problem with your new dental implant.
Overall, dental implants can be a great solution for people who have lost adult teeth. And with the right care and maintenance, it is possible for a dental implant to last you for many decades without the need for repair or replacement.