A dental implant is very much like a natural tooth. It looks, feels, and functions the same way. It also requires the same care as natural teeth. But, because the implant is actually artificially inserted into your gums and jawbone, you may wonder if food can get trapped underneath it.
Hopefully, this short blog post will provide the answers you are looking for.
How Dental Implants Work
To answer this question, it's important to help you understand how dental implants work.
An implant has three parts: a metal post, an abutment, and a crown. The metal post is surgically inserted into the jawbone and replaces the root of the missing tooth. Once the implant has been placed, and the osseointegration process is completed (which takes between six and nine months), the dentist attaches the abutment. The abutment will connect the metal post to the crown and complete the implant.
Can Food Get Trapped Under Dental Implants?
Why did we go through all the trouble of explaining how implants work? Because if you understand the anatomy of an implant, you will also know that it is very unlikely for food to get trapped under the implant per se, meaning the metal post.
However, food can get stuck under or around the crown, in which case it's important to remove it. While the crown is artificial and will not be affected by bacteria, the surrounding gums and tissue can suffer. Failing to remove food particles that are stuck under or around the crown can lead to the inflammation of the surrounding gum tissue (gingivitis.)
Tips for Caring for Dental Implants
As we said, dental implants need the same attention as natural teeth, which makes caring for them quite easy:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid damaging the implant or your gums.
- Floss every night before brushing to remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth and around the implant.
- Use a mouthwash to kill bacteria and reduce the risk of infection.
- Avoid hard or sticky foods that may damage the implant or get stuck in between the implant and surrounding teeth and gums.
- Visit your dentist every six months. This way, you can ensure that your implants are in good condition and clean your teeth so that you maintain them healthy and white.
What If I Develop Gingivitis?
If you failed to take good care of your oral health and are now noticing the first signs of gum disease, it's time to get in touch with Evergreen Dental Co. as soon as possible. We will first make sure that your implant is not affected, thoroughly clean your teeth, and teach you how to take better care of your oral health.