Have you had one or more dental implant placed as a solution for missing teeth? Though they’re highly durable and can last a lifetime, this is only true as long as you take good care of them. Unfortunately, many people have bad habits that can damage their dental implants so badly that they end up failing. To ensure your implants continue to provide you with a complete smile for years to come, avoid participating in these six bad habits.
Habit #1: Bad Oral Hygiene
Though your dental implants can’t develop cavities, that doesn’t mean you can stop brushing and flossing your teeth. If you don’t keep up with your oral hygiene, plaque can accumulate in your mouth and damage the tissue that holds your implants in place, which may lead to implant failure.
Habit #2: Too Much Sugar
Eating too many sweets can lead to more issues than just tooth decay. It can also drastically raise your chances of developing gum disease. When the gums become infected, bacteria begins to destroy the tissue that supports your natural teeth and dental implants. This can cause your implants to fail and may also lead to additional tooth loss.
Habit #3: Using Teeth as Tools
Opening bottles, cans, or packages with your teeth may seem harmless enough, but it can actually cause damage to both your teeth and your dental implants. This bad habit creates pressure that will begin to weaken them over time. To avoid the temptation of using your pearly whites to crack open a cold one, be sure to always have the correct tools handy.
Habit #4: Smoking or Chewing Tobacco
Smoking impairs your body’s ability to heal and increases your chances of getting oral cancer. Dental implants are two to three times more likely to fail in the mouths of smokers than nonsmokers, so kicking this habit can help you protect your investment.
Habit #5: Nail Biting
Many people chew on their nails when they’re stressed or bored, but this habit can lead to cracked teeth or implants. Nail-biting can also introduce bacteria into your mouth that can cause your gums to become infected. You should also avoid chewing on ice, pencils, or any other non-food items for the same reasons. If you feel the need to keep your mouth occupied, try chewing on sugar-free gum instead.
Habit #6: Skipping Dental Checkups
No matter how diligent you are with brushing and flossing, you’ll likely develop hard deposits called tartar on your teeth at some point. Tartar can shelter oral bacteria and contribute to gum disease, so professional cleanings are a key part of keeping both your natural teeth and your dental implants healthy. Visiting the dentist every six months also allows them to keep an eye out for potential oral health concerns that can lead to implant failure.
By avoiding the above bad habits, you’ll be able to protect your implants from harm and really get your money’s worth. Keep your mouth healthy and happy to enjoy a lovely smile that can last a lifetime!
About the Practice
If you have dental implants and want to learn how to keep them bright and beautiful for as long as possible, Westside Dental Associates can help. By bringing quality dental care and exceptional customer service to the residents of Los Angeles, they are helping further beautify their city one smile at a time. Call them at (310) 907-7987 or visit their website to learn more about how to properly care for your dental implants or to schedule an appointment.