Dental Implants from a Hygienists’ Perspective.

You’re never too old to care about your appearance or quality of life. With the population living longer, more people of an older age are choosing dental implants as a preferred option to having dentures.

Choosing Dental Implants

Your dentist will help decide whether the implant option is suitable in your individual circumstances, based on your general medical health, your oral health and your ability to maintain a good oral environment to protect your dental implants in the future. Any factors that may impede the success of implants, such as smoking, certain medication or a history of gum disease, will be taken into consideration.

It is extremely useful for you also to see a hygienist before your implants are placed. They will

  • help create a healthy environment in your mouth
  • establish a good oral hygiene routine with you for you to continue at home
  • assess and advise on the impact any other health problems such as a dry mouth, might have on the health of your mouth
  • assess and advise on any limitations, such as restricted movement in your hands, that may impact on your ability to keep up with a good oral hygiene routine
  • advise you on the most appropriate oral hygiene appliances to maintain a clean mouth and maintain implant health
  • determine who will be responsible for your maintenance programme. If this will be a carer, advise and teach them the skills they need to assist you

Why is hygiene maintenance so important?

The main purpose of cleaning your mouth, around your teeth and any implants, is to disturb and remove plaque and biofilm.

Plaque is a soft, sticky film (biofilm) that builds up on your teeth and contains millions of bacteria. The bacteria in plaque cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Failure to keep your implants clean and healthy can lead to their failure to integrate in to your jaw bone and subsequent loss.

Ongoing hygiene appointments will help monitor your implants, the effectiveness of your maintenance programme and keep on top of any periodontal or peri-implant disease.

Dental care products

Our hygienists recommend the following dental care products for your armoury

  • a toothbrush, preferably an electric toothbrush. These provide more effective brushing and prevent over-brushing.
  • a single tufted toothbrush. For specific focused areas.
  • dental floss. For cleaning between tight spaces.
  • interdental brushes. For hard to reach places.
  • a tongue cleaner
  • mouth wash. Effective against the bacteria in your mouth.

For anyone having difficulties managing their oral hygiene maintenance programme, we would recommend more frequent visits to see the hygienist. Three monthly reviews may be appropriate in some circumstances.

For practical problems like poor dexterity, adapted dental appliances will help. You can speak to our dental nurse with special care training if you need advice.

Should you get into any trouble keeping your implants thoroughly clean, our hygienists have the right instruments and expertise to undertake deep cleaning treatment below the gum level to the peri-implant tissues. Ensuring the best possible longevity of the implants.