How Do I Maintain My Dental Implants?

Dental implants offer a durable alternative to replace missing or damaged teeth. Implants are secured to the jaw bones and allow you to chew normally, speak more naturally, and require much less maintenance than dentures.

Taking care of your implants after you receive them is vitally important to your oral health, and the life of your implants and begins as soon as your procedure is over. To care for your implants immediately after your procedure, you should:

  • Gently bite down on the sponges your oral surgeon placed in your mouth after the procedure to control bleeding.
  • Avoid excessively moving, and keep your head elevated for the first eight to 12 hours after surgery.
  • Place ice packs on your face at 15-minute intervals to control pain and swelling.
  • Consume only beverages and soft foods for the first 24 hours. Do not use a straw to drink.
  • Take prescription medicines as prescribed.
  • Avoid rinsing your mouth out for the first 24 hours.

Once you have completed your surgeon’s recommended time and instructions for immediate aftercare, caring for your implants includes:

  • Use a soft brush: Use a soft, nylon toothbrush because the bristles are pliable and gentle on implants. Avoid using toothbrushes with hard bristles and metal tools that can scratch the surface of the teeth.
  • Use non-abrasive products: After you receive your implants, use sensitive cleaning products, such as toothpaste or mouthwash. Products with abrasive qualities can cause intense discomfort, as does products containing mint or cinnamon.
  • Floss daily: As with natural teeth, you should floss your dental implants one or two times daily. Flossing is more important when you have implants, as plaque easily accumulates and could lead to oral hygiene problems.
  • Use a water pick: If flossing causes discomfort, consider switching to a water pick to gently clean between teeth and gums.
  • Use an oral rinse: Add an oral rinse to your daily dental hygiene routine after brushing and flossing. Mouthwash kills harmful bacteria in your mouth and helps prevent bad breath. Swish in your mouth for 30 seconds, then spit it out; never swallow mouthwash because it can be harmful if ingested.
  • Avoid sticky and hard foods: Implants can be damaged by eating sticky or hard foods, such as caramel, apples, or steak.
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking: While having a negative effect on your overall health, drinking alcohol and smoking has detrimental effects on your dental implants. This is especially important in the beginning, as the healing time after receiving implants is six months, and alcohol consumption slows the healing process.
  • Make regular appointments: Appointments twice per year are recommended for everyone, not just those with dental implants. However, making sure you see the dentist at least twice a year is important after receiving your implants.

Dental implants offer patients a much better option for retaining healthy-looking and strong teeth. If you are considering dental implants, or you are having a problem with an existing implant, schedule a consultation with an oral surgeon.

South Jersey Oral Surgeons at Lanzi Burke Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons Repair Patients’ Teeth With Dental Implants

Oral technology has progressed tremendously in recent years, offering patients much better options for replacing missing or damaged teeth, such as durable dental implants. If you are interested in learning more about dental implants, one of our South Jersey oral surgeons at Lanzi Burke Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons can help. Call us today at 856-582-4222 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation. Located in Washington Township, Haddonfield, and Woolwich Township, New Jersey, we serve patients throughout South Jersey.

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