If you have one or more dental implants that were placed at Marineland Dental Care or anywhere else you know how wonderful they are! No more missing teeth, slipping dentures, embarrassment, or shame over your smile. Dental implants are a wonderful way to get your smile back and live with confidence!
Your dental implants are tough too – they’re made out of titanium and you never have to worry about getting a cavity! But that doesn’t mean you mouth is indestructible! Dental implants can still be lost due to diseases of the mouth so you need to be sure you’re taking good care of your implants!
We’ve placed a lot of dental implants at our Kennewick dentist office and we want yours to last a lifetime!
What Can Happen?
As we mentioned above, your implants aren’t at risk of being harmed themselves. They’re titanium and ceramic – they’re tough! The problem lies in what supports them: your bone and gums. When you have infections of the gums or bone you can end up with a kind of condition similar to gum disease. The condition is known as peri-implant disease and left untreated it can completely destroy your implants!
Peri-Implant Diseases: What Are They?
Peri-implant diseases come in two forms: peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis. They are very similar to gum disease and gingivitis and have similar outcomes: destruction of gums and bone! Both conditions are caused by the bacteria found in dental plaque. When it gets under your gumline it is able to spread uncontrollably, leading to infection and irritation.
Peri-implant mucositis is the first stage and it looks a lot like gingivitis. You’ll notice that the gums around your implant are red, irritated, and a bit swollen. It’s also common for your gums to recede and to bleed when you brush your teeth.
At this stage it’s possible to treat peri-implant mucositis and reverse the damaged caused. At our Kennewick office we used advanced periodontal treatment methods that are just as applicable to treating your peri-implant disease. If we catch it in time your implant, bone, and gums will be just fine!
Peri-implantitis happens when the disease worsens to the point that it affects the bone around your dental implant. At this stage you’re at serious risk to lose the implant completely! The bond between your bone and your dental implant is strong, but as the bone recedes your implant will become looser and looser!
When the bone around your implant has been lost it can be difficult to repair the damage. Without bone to stabilize your implant it will be at constant risk! Surgery can be required to truly restore and protect your dental implant.
Who Is At Risk?
When it comes to peri-implant diseases the risks are just like gum disease: anyone can get it! There is bacteria in our mouths that cause tooth decay and other damage and if they aren’t controlled then you can end up in trouble! But that’s also the good part – with proper home and professional care you can avoid peri-implant disease completely!
There are certain things that can put you at risk for peri-implant disease, though. Diabetics have a higher chance of facing these conditions and so do smokers! Smoking is a serious risk factor because of the way it changes the balance of bacteria in your mouth. Most of us have a mix of bacteria – some of it is harmful and some not. Studies of the mouths of smokers has shown that there is a much higher amount of harmful bacteria in their mouths! This greatly increases the chances of tooth decay, gum disease, and peri-implant disease!
It’s important to practice good oral hygiene and stop smoking if you want to preserve your remaining natural teeth and your implants. Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss in the evenings. Your dental implants should really be treated just like natural teeth!
It’s also essential to get regular professional cleanings and exams at our Kennewick dentist office. By seeing you every six months we can build a continual record of your oral health and quickly detect changes that could point to trouble. We thoroughly examine your teeth, implants, gums, and every part of your mouth!
Make The Choice For Great Oral Health
You implants are designed to last a lifetime and they can with proper care! Make the right choice for your oral health and call Marineland Dental Care today! You can reach us at 509-591-0515 or you can schedule an appointment online by filling out our appointment request form. We look forward to seeing you soon!