Why You Need To Clean Your Dental Implants

Posted on: 13 September 2016

If you don't feel that you need to clean your dental implants as thoroughly as your natural teeth when you brush and floss, you may be wrong. Here are a few reasons why.

Gum Health

A dental implant is still secured beneath the gums. Due to this positioning, gum disease can affect the viability of the implant. In fact, the gum tissue may start to recede from the implant restoration in the same manner that it does when it becomes inflamed around a natural tooth.

If the area around the implant is not properly cleaned on a regular basis, the inflammation of the gums could progress. As gingivitis, which is a less severe form of gum disease, progresses into a more severe type of gum inflammation called Periodontitis, the inflammation can start to affect the bone.

If the bone around a dental implant becomes less dense, it may no longer hold the implant firmly in place. As a result, the dental implant can shift from its current position. This shifting can result in dental implant failure.

A dental implant goes through a process called osseointegration as it heals during the months following its placement. Osseointegration is the fusing or connecting of the dental implant to the bone of your jaw. The implant may be deemed a success initially, but it is doomed to fail if it is moved from its original position.

Proper cleaning around the implant can help protect the jawbone by preventing damage caused by gum disease.

Health of Adjacent Teeth

Plaque that is left on the surface of the implant crown can also affect adjacent teeth. The acids produced by the bacteria in the plaque can cause the natural teeth to begin to decay. The acid demineralizes the enamel of the teeth and causes cavities to form.

If the decay is allowed to persist, it can cause dental infections that could require treatment through extensive dental applications, such as root canals. If an infection is severe enough, the damaged tooth could have to be extracted.

By properly cleaning the implant crown and the surrounding areas, you can remove the plaque and other decay-causing agents that could affect the natural teeth. No special cleaning devices are needed. The implant should be brushed and flossed as a natural tooth would be.

To learn more about the reasons an implant restoration should be thoroughly cleaned, schedule an appointment with a dentist in your area.