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If you want your dental implant(s) to last a long time, there are some simple oral hygiene rules to follow. Because dental implants function like natural teeth, they should be cared for the same way you care for your natural teeth. A regular regimen of brushing, flossing, check ups and cleanings at your dentist's office are the first steps in caring for your implants. It is also important to be vigilant of the types of foods that your eat - especially foods high in starch and sugar. These foods can cause a build up of acid laden bacteria which can cause gum disease. Proper maintenance of dental implants should become an important part of your daily routine. By developing good oral hygiene habits, you reduce the risk of having the implants fail. Remember, you have invested time, effort and money into having the implants placed and restored. To neglect them, may mean having to have the whole procedure repeated again.
Dental Implant treatments are carried out daily in thousands of dental offices, with predictable results; so patients should not view the placing of a dental implant as a 'daunting' process. After implant surgery, most patients are pleasantly surprised by how 'easy' the whole process was, with little or no discomfort. While dental implants are strong and can last for many years, they are not indestructible.
Once the dentist determines that the implant is firmly in place (Osseointegrated), the abutment and crown will be attached. You will regain the feeling of having a natural tooth back in place. Ceramic crowns are very strong these days - almost as strong as tooth enamel - but crowns can chip or break if enough force is applied. This is also true of dentures, if you have a bar-retained overdenture or hybrid appliance with a titanium frame. The acrylic denture material can fracture or break, but this can be easily remedied. You should never use your teeth as a tool, like a bottle opener, or for crunching hard candy or ice. Teeth are designed for chewing regular edible foods, and will last you a very long time if properly taken care of. As we tell our patients, "If you think your teeth aren't important, imagine trying to eat without them."
The New Dental Implant
Dr. Leigh will implant the titanium threaded screw directly into the bone. Depending on the type of implant treatment, you will have to go through a healing period (from 2 to 5 months), during which your jaw bone and gums are allowed to heal and grow around the implant. This 'healing' period (known as "Osseointegration") stabilizes the implant in the bone, and makes for a stronger foundation for the attachment of the abutment and crown.
For information about the dental implant success rate at the Leigh Smile Center, over the past five years, please contact our Dental Implant Team at firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be evaluated before your implant is placed, to ensure the best possible outcome for a successful implant. Your Dentist will set up a check-up schedule after the implant has been placed, to avoid possible complications that may arise, and to care for the implant(s).
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Caring for Your Implant
The Leigh Smile Center Staff will provide you with written instructions on how to take care of your dental implants. Our Dental Hygienists are very experienced in the care and maintenance of dental implants, and are more than happy to provide you with the oral hygiene aids used for implant care. They will provide you with answers to any questions you may have. Below are some important points to remember:
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