If you’re one of the millions of Americans who have missing teeth, you might be thinking about getting dental implants. They’re a fantastic way to replace those pearly whites because they’re extremely sturdy, and they can prevent your jawbone from weakening. Many people prefer them overdentures and other methods that might be used to replace teeth. However, just like anything in the medical world, implants aren’t free from potential complications. If you don’t take care of them properly, you may face serious consequences.

INFECTION AND BONE LOSS

Your mouth is full of bacteria, which is why you brush and floss regularly. You don’t want those nasty little microbes to cause tooth decay or gum disease. Battling bacteria buildup is especially important if you have implants because it can cause an infection around the titanium posts in your jaw. This condition, known as perio-implantitis, leads to gum inflammation and possible bone loss.

If an infection progresses far enough and there is the significant bone loss, the implants will lose their support. They could even fall out.

Taking good care of dental implants can greatly reduce the risk that you’ll suffer from such serious complications. However, some patients have found that they weren’t informed from the get-go about how to look after their new teeth. Your dentist should be sure to talk to you about all the pros and cons of implants and make sure you’re well-educated on how to prevent perio-implantitis so you can enjoy your restored smile for a lifetime.

HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR IMPLANTS

The groups of people who are most at risk for perio-implantitis include the following:

· Tobacco users

· Those with poor oral hygiene habits

· Anyone who has gum disease

Before you receive implants, your dentist should talk to you about any lifestyle choices that might affect the success of your surgery. If you smoke, chew tobacco, or don’t brush your teeth as often as you should, make a diligent effort to change your ways. If you have gum disease, get it taken care of as soon as possible so it doesn’t reach an advanced stage.

Just like your natural pearly whites, implants need regular attention so they can continue to do their job. In addition to sticking to an excellent oral hygiene routine, you should visit your dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. Your dental care professional will look for early signs of inflammation, assess how your implants are faring, and recommend any treatments that might be needed.

Dental implants can give you back a strong, healthy set of teeth. However, they aren’t without their risks. Be sure to take good care of them so they can last a lifetime.