Most dental implants are placed without any problems, but occasionally complications do arise. One such complication is the onset of peri-implantitis. This is an oral infection that, left untreated, can destroy the gums and bone surrounding the dental implant and lead to the implant failing. With a little bit of discipline, however, you can avoid developing this infection. Here's what you need to know to protect yourself.
Minimize Mitigating Factors
The goal for dental implants is to ensure they are fully integrated into the socket so there's no room for bacterium to enter. Unfortunately, sometimes tiny holes and gaps do form during the integration process that allows bacteria to enter, and this is the primary reason why some people get peri-implantitis.
However, there are a few mitigating factors that increase a person's risk of developing this oral infection, and they are typically things that either increase the amount of bacteria in your mouth or make it difficult for your body to effectively fend off the infection. For example, some of the common secondary factors that contribute to a person's susceptibility to peri-implantitis include:
Diabetes increases the amount of sugar in your saliva, which encourages bacteria in your mouth to grow by providing them a food source. Heart disease and smoking can negatively impact your blood circulation, making it difficult for white blood cells to get to the site of infection and kill the bacteria. Osteoporosis, drug abuse, and bruxism may lead to mechanical damage to the bones, gums, and the implant, which may introduce holes for bacteria to invade.
To reduce your chances of getting peri-implantitis, get any underlying conditions that may contribute to its development under control.
Practice Impeccable Oral Hygiene
The other thing you can do is practice excellent oral hygiene to avoid giving bacteria a chance to infect your dental implant. Brush your teeth after every meal to eliminate leftover food debris that may allow bacteria to breed. Floss at least once per day using a Waterpik to get rid of plaque in tight spaces. Rinse with an antiseptic mouthwash to kill excess bacteria.
Most off all, though, see your dentist for regular checkups. Peri-implantitis starts very mildly, so much so that most people don't realize they have the infection until it's too late. However, your dentist knows what to look for. He or she can catch the disease in its early stages and eliminate it before it hurts your implant.
For more information about peri-implantitis or to schedule an appointment for dental implants, contact a dentist near you, such as John S. Lyon DDS.Share
22 July 2016
Hi, my name is Kevin Nelson and I want to tell you about my experience. I had a painful tooth so I went to see my dentist. After the examination, he said that I needed to have a root canal to save the tooth. I told the dentist to just pull the tooth instead and then he explained why that wasn't a good idea. He said that pulling the tooth would cause additional problems and then he told me what could happen. I didn't want any more problems, so the dentist did the root canal and I'm glad that he did. I wanted to write a blog to tell others about the benefits of a root canal and what to expect during the procedure. I hope that by getting the word out, other people won't make the same mistake that I almost did by getting a perfectly good tooth pulled.