Just like natural teeth there is no guarantee a person’s dental implant(s) will last a lifetime. Although they may look bionic in pictures, a dental implant still needs careful monitoring and regular care. True, they cannot decay like natural teeth – but they are subject to the same complications of gum disease and bone loss. Once a dental implant is placed, treatment does not stop there. If it does, there’s a high chance of a infection of the gums, even around implants.
If you’ve undergone treatment for periodontal (gum) disease, you know how involved it can be. If you have lost teeth to periodontal disease and have had dental implants placed, you know the great investment in time and money it takes. Naturally, you would like to protect your investment and keep your dental implant(s) for many years, if not for life! Even if you have had an implant placed due to decay or a cracked root or badly broken tooth, you need to keep the gum support around the implant health, just as you do for natural teeth.
Periodontal maintenance (PM) is important for all patients after treatment, especially those with dental implants. Plaque, a thin film of bacteria and food particles responsible gum disease, continue to grow again on your tooth and/or implant surfaces as it did before. Diligent, daily brushing and flossing will help to curb that development.
It is also important to keep up regular dental visits for advanced cleaning to remove hard to reach plaque and calculus. Patients prone to gum disease are usually prescribed three or four but for some other gum disease patients, six times a year, especially just after treatment. Many patients alternate visits for periodontal maintenance between a periodontal or implant specialist and their general dentist so that their periodontal condition is closely monitored, as well as the health of their teeth.
Our goal is to reduce the chances of infection of the gums, especially around a dental implant. To do this, we’ll thoroughly examine your teeth, gums and any implants for signs of disease (as well as an oral cancer screening). This includes an assessment the health of your teeth and gums and to see how well you’re doing with plaque control and review your recommended customized daily oral hygiene instructions.
Overall, we want to prevent the occurrence of any future disease and treat it as soon as possible if it relapses. Keeping up with homemade and a routine periodontal maintenance schedule will help ensure your gums, and your implants continue to stay healthy.
If you would like more information on periodontal disease, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation 727-586-2681.