How to Protect Your Teeth

What You Can Do To Prevent Dental Implant Infections

Dental implants are often the best ways to replace a missing tooth. The implant itself is surgically implanted into your jawbone, which takes the place of your natural tooth's root. Then it's covered with a crown that blends in seamlessly with the rest of your smile, so no one can tell which tooth is an implant. As effective and durable as dental implants can be, if you don't properly care for the surgical site or don't ask questions about the type of implant your dentist uses then you risk developing an infection. Follow these tips to help minimize your risk of dental implant infection and help your implant last a lifetime.

Ask About Medicine-Filled Implants

In 2017, Belgium researchers introduced a new type of implant that contains a specialized reservoir. This innovative implant contains antimicrobial drugs that are gradually released into your gum tissue. This slow diffusion of medication from the implant's reservoir can destroy any lingering bacteria and prevent infections while your surgical site heals. Talk with your dentist to see if you're a candidate for this revolutionary implant. 

Use a Waterpik®

Waterpiks aren't just helpful for removing decay-causing biofilm from below your gum line, they're also beneficial for keeping your gum tissue healthy while recovering from dental implant surgery. Researchers from Tufts University School of Medicine evaluated the Waterpik Water Flosser to determine how well it can work to prevent infections. They found that this specialized dental tool is twice as effective as string flossing when it comes to cleaning around implants. The system's unique Plaque Seeker® Tip cleans around your implant, while the pulsating water further helps gently reach deeper into your gum tissue. This combination effect removes stubborn plaque from around your implant, so your risk of infection decreases. 

Learn About Which Implant You're Getting

Not all implants are created equal. With advancements in implant dentistry technology, it's important to talk with your dentist about which type of implant you're getting. Some of the newer types of implants are designed with a specialized coating. The coating helps prevent bacterial growth, which drastically decreases your risk of implant infection. Plus, the surface of this specialized implant has a rough texture, which further makes it difficult for bacteria to grow. The rough texture even promotes cellular growth, so your gum and bone tissue effectively fuse to the implant.  

If you are interested in more about implant dentistry, contact a local dentist. 

With so many different types of implants on the market and tools to help reduce your risk of infection, you can often prevent implant infections. But if you do start noticing redness, swelling, or discomfort, get in to see your dentist right away. The sooner you treat any underlying infection, the better your chances of fully recovering.