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Tips to protect your dental implants

 Before starting the placement of any type of dental implant, the mouth must be healthy and free of infections.

Tips to protect your dental implants

The success rate of implant therapies is worse in smokers but improves significantly when they choose to quit this harmful habit, thus reducing the risk of implant treatment failure.

Implants should not be considered as a consumer good, but as medical devices that, as such, require care and attention. To keep the implants healthy and prevent the appearance of problems with them, it is recommended to follow these tips; among them, it is essential to quit smoking:

1. Before undergoing the placement of any type of dental implant, the mouth must be healthy and free of infections. If periodontal disease is present, it should be properly treated and well-controlled. If implants are placed in a mouth with active periodontitis, the implants can become infected with bacteria from the gums and, in the long run, it will mean a certain failure of this type of treatment.

2. A history of periodontitis increases the risk of peri-implant disease. Patients who have implants but do not receive treatment for periodontitis suffer more frequently from complications around the implants (mucositis and peri-implantitis) and have a higher risk of implant loss than those without previous periodontitis.

3. Smoking is an important risk factor for developing peri-implant diseases. This toxic habit causes greater implant loss, and it has been shown that the failure rate of implant therapy is significantly higher in patients who smoke than in non-smokers. Therefore, it is essential to stop smoking to ensure the success of implant treatment

4. Poor oral hygiene predisposes to implant infection. For this reason, it is very important to follow correct oral hygiene instructions that allow good control of dental plaque, using manual or electric toothbrushes and different interdental hygiene techniques. Hygiene instructions should be individualized according to the position of the implants and the design of the prosthesis. Prostheses that are difficult to clean triple the risk of suffering peri-implantitis.

5. A preventive oral health program should be followed. This program basically consists of periodically (every four or six months) attending periodontal and implantological control and maintenance visits.

Maintaining the health of the implants is fundamental since the peri-implant sulcus is deeper, the peri-implant tissues are less effective against bacterial aggression from dental plaque and the prosthesis can make oral hygiene more difficult.

6. At the first sign of alarm, go to your dentist. If you notice inflammation in the gum around the implants, it may be due to mucositis, which manifests itself with inflammation, redness, and bleeding around the implants. You should go to your dentist or periodontist to make an assessment as soon as possible and treat it to prevent bone loss around the implant.

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