Cleaning Implant Supported Dentures
If you are considering implant supported dentures as a treatment plan, you may be wondering about how the dentures should be cleaned and maintained for optimal longevity. Just as our natural teeth must be regularly cleaned in order to stay healthy, implant supported dentures also need to be carefully cleaned daily. The cleaning and maintenance needed for your implanted denture will vary depending on the type of prosthesis used.
Patients with single unit dental implants should maintain the implant the same way they do their natural teeth. Daily flossing and brushing are vital to preserving the implant and maintaining good overall dental hygiene. In addition, the implant should be removed during cleaning so that the patient can clean around the prosthesis, the surrounding gums, and to clean the prosthesis itself. It is also recommended that patients remove the implants at night in order to prevent any infection or other complications. And just as you would with your natural teeth, you should continue to have cleanings performed by a dental hygienist at least twice a year. Should the patient have periodontal disease, they should have four such cleanings per year in order to maintain oral health. During check-ups and cleanings, your dentist will ensure that the gums and tissue in the mouth are healthy and that the implant is not causing any discomfort to the patient. Sometimes X-rays will be performed to verify that the implant is properly positioned. If the implant snaps in and out of place, your dentist will evaluate the snaps to determine if they need replacement. Typically, patients can expect to replace the snaps every six to nine months.
For patients that have a prosthesis that cannot be removed at home, they will need to take other steps to ensure their implant, and natural teeth, are properly cleaned. One way to clean non removable implants is to use a water pick between the gum tissue and the prosthesis. This effectively flushes out any debris that has collected under the prosthesis and will help prevent decay, disease, and discomfort. Flossing underneath the implant is also advised as a way to debride the surface and remove any build up. Non removable implanted dentures should also be brushed, just like you would your natural teeth, but the prosthesis material will dictate whether to use toothpaste or not when brushing. If your prosthesis is made out of porcelain or zirconia, regular toothpaste should be used but if the denture is made of acrylic titanium, patients should not use toothpaste as it can scratch the face of the denture. As such, it is sometimes recommended that patients use a separate toothbrush (with toothpaste) on their natural teeth so that they do not get confused and accidentally damage the prosthesis.
When properly maintained and cleaned, patients can expect their implanted dentures to last many years. Avoiding any sticky or hard foods is also advisable as these can damage your dentures. Lifestyle activities, particularly sports prone to impact, should also be considered as dentures, just like natural teeth, are susceptible to damage from trauma.
More information on Implant Supported Dentures : How Long do Implant Supported Dentures Last?