Whether you’ve just become the proud recipient of one dental implant or multiple, you’ll need to know how to properly care for them.

Despite dental implants consisting of an artificial tooth root topped with a crown, you still should practice good dental hygiene to keep them (and your natural teeth) in ideal shape.

Let’s look at 5 tips that our dentists recommend you follow when caring for your dental implants.

Use Gentle or Sensitive Cleaning Products

After you receive dental implants, you’ll want to switch over to a soft toothbrush and sensitive cleaning products if you haven’t already. These items will prevent any discomfort that may occur and allow for easier oral care.

Nylon toothbrushes work great as the bristles are flexible and gentle on your dental implants. Toothbrushes containing hard bristles can scratch the surface of your implants. Any type of metal instrument used for cleaning should be avoided as well.

Try to also stay away from any toothpaste or mouthwash that is abrasive. Products of this nature can cause discomfort and intense flavors can result in an uncomfortable mouth feeling.

Floss and Brush Every Day

Even with dental implants, you should continue to brush your teeth at least twice a day as well as floss daily. It’s actually more important to floss after you have received dental implants due to possible plaque accumulation.

Yes, plaque can easily build up around your implants which can result in other oral hygiene issues. Luckily, there are many types of floss on the market that are targeted toward people with dental implants.

Have trouble remembering to floss? Set a reminder on your phone or do it while watching tv so it doesn’t feel like much of a chore.

Avoid Smoking

In general, our dentists recommend that you avoid smoking for your overall health. It is especially vital to abstain from this habit when you have dental implants as smoking can interfere with the healing process following surgery.

Dental implants take about 6 months to heal fully so smoking during this sensitive time can be damaging. For the sake of your teeth, gums, and body, we urge you to refrain from smoking if possible.

Limit Consumption of Sticky/Hard Foods

Eating any food that is inherently sticky or hard can damage your dental implants soon after recovery. Furthermore, these types of foods can also be harmful to your natural teeth if consumed too regularly.

While dental implants differ from dentures in that they allow for a less restricted diet, proper healing needs to occur first. After your dental implant procedure, try to eat soft foods so your mouth and jaw can rest.

Some foods to avoid during this time include:

  • Caramel
  • Ice
  • Hard candies
  • Gum
  • Apples
  • Crusty bread

Once you are fully healed and cleared by our dentists, you are welcome to eat your favorite foods again.

See Our Dental Implant Dentists Regularly

Dental implants will restore your smile but unfortunately, they will not absolve you of all future dental issues. Our dentists would still like to see you for routine teeth cleanings every 3-6 months to monitor your oral health.

A visit to either of our MI Smiles Dental locations will also provide you with an opportunity to bring up any concerns you might have regarding your implants. Our dentists will check on the condition of your dental implants and provide you with helpful advice on care techniques if needed.

Have More Dental Implant Questions?

Having questions about your dental implants is normal. Here at MI Smiles Dental, we have the answers you’re looking for. Our dental implant dentists in Grand Rapids and Grand Haven, MI, are here to help you maintain great oral health throughout the entire process of implantation.

Contact us online to schedule an appointment or call one of our locations today to set up a time that works best for you.