Wellness Tips | 15 February, 2023

How to Care for Your Dental Implants

How long do dental implants last?

Dental implants can last decades or longer with proper care and maintenance, good oral hygiene routine and regular check-ups with your dentist.

Every person is different, and the lifespan of your implants depends on factors such as:

  • How you use your teeth
  • Your diet
  • Your lifestyle
  • The placement of your implants

Read on to find out some tips on how you can maintain your dental implants and keep them looking their best for longer!

How to care for your dental implants

There are a few things you can do to extend the lifespan of your dental implants and prevent damage or breaking from happening.

Practice good oral hygiene

A good oral hygiene routine is essential for everyone, but is especially important to maintain your dental implants, and luckily, caring for your dental implants is much the same as caring for your natural teeth.

Aim to brush twice a day with non-abrasive toothpaste (abrasive materials can damage the smooth surface of your implant and lead to bacterial growth). Make sure you focus on areas where plaque builds up, such as the sides of your teeth and around implants to help prevent gum disease.

Flossing is also essential to prevent food particles and plaque from building up between teeth and implants - there are many tools to help you floss with implants, such as water flossers and special dental floss.

Read our article on How to Floss Properly to learn more!

Combined with flossing and brushing, an anti-bacterial mouthwash is also a great idea to eliminate bacteria.

Visit your dentist regularly

Regular check-ups with your dentist go hand in hand with good oral hygiene, as your dentist will be able to monitor the progress of your implants, catch any issues early on, and give your teeth the professional clean they need to stay looking their best! We recommend at least two dentist visits per year.

Your dentist will also have their own advice for you to follow on maintaining your dental implants, so you must follow their instructions above all else.

Monitor risk factors

Some pre-existing conditions or lifestyle choices can play a role in the health and longevity of your dental implants (as well as your natural teeth), including:

  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • A smoking habit
  • Being prone to gum disease

It's important to discuss these factors with your dentist prior to getting dental implants. Where possible, mitigate these risk factors by maintaining a good oral hygiene routine.

What should I do if a dental implant breaks?

Whilst it's rare for a dental implant to break, they can sometimes become damaged as a result of:

  • Too much pressure during healing before the bone and implant have fused
  • A broken screw in the abutment
  • General wear and tear to the restoration attached to the implant from eating hard foods.

The most likely part of your implant to become damaged or break is the tooth restoration (or dental crown) rather than the implant inside your jaw. If your restoration breaks, your dentist can usually replace it with a new crown by taking impressions of your mouth, relatively easily.

If there is an issue with your implant, your dentist can remove and replace them for you. Luckily, if the abutment or screw breaks, it can be fixed without replacing the implant.

If you think your dental implant is broken or damaged, book an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible to investigate the issue.

Time for a check up?

Make sure your oral hygiene is in tip-top shape by booking an appointment today.