Medically Reviewed By Dr. Tina Beck

Old Couple Leaning Against Each Other on CouchWhether you’re a San Diego resident with a mouthful of dental implants or just one, you need to know how to properly care for them to make sure they last the lifetime they’re designed to live. Some dental implants patients, especially those who have received a total smile makeover and no longer have any of their natural teeth, falsely believe that they don’t need to do anything to care for them. That thinking couldn’t be further from the truth! The reality is if you have dental implants you need to care for them the same way you would if they were your natural teeth or maybe even a little bit more!

About Dental Implants

Before we dive deep into care instructions, let us explain to you the basic 411 on dental implants in case you are just learning about them. Dental implants are the newest tooth replacement options on the market, replacing the need for dentures and dental bridges, which were previously the only solution to replace teeth that were. When cared for properly, dental implants are designed to last a lifetime, and to allow you to chew on anything you’d like, even the chewiest of chewy and the crunchiest of crunchy foods.

Dental implants work by using a small titanium screw to replace a tooth root and support an artificial crown. The dental implant not only holds the new tooth in place, but it also estimates your jawbone the same way the natural tooth root did. Without this stimulation, the jawbone may deteriorate, something that is medically referred to as jawbone resorption or “atrophy.”

Dental implants can be placed to replace a single tooth or an entire mouthful of teeth. Some San Diego residents choose dental implants as part of an aesthetic treatment called a total smile makeover. In this case, the implants are placed to give the patient a more cosmetically pleasing smile. In other cases, implants are selected to replace teeth that have either already been extracted or fallen out or need to be extracted due to severe decay.

Proper Dental Implant Care

San Diego patients who choose dental implants should care for them just as they would their natural teeth. This means they must:

  • Brush their dental implants twice a day
  • Floss around the dental implants at least once a day
  • Use additional hygiene aides like interdental brushes or a water pick, depending on the recommendation from your surgeon and hygienist
  • Compliance with the recommended dental maintenance schedule, sometimes as often as every 2-3 months

Preventing Peri-Implantitis

Following the above care regimen for dental implants is important so that San Diego patients don’t develop a rare, but very serious dental implants complication called peri-implantitis. With this condition, an infection develops around the implant, deep inside the jawbone, causing severe bone loss and implant failure. After investing so much time and effort into getting dental implants, you definitely don’t want complications that can lead to their removal.

Schedule a Consultation or Cleaning with Dr. Beck

Whether you’d like to speak with San Diego periodontist Dr. Beck because you are considering dental implants and need to know if you’re a qualified candidate, or you already have an implant and have some concerns you’d like to discuss, or simply need help cleaning and caring for them, she’s happy to help. Call her periodontal offices in San diego today to schedule an appointment at (858) 635-6700.