Gum Disease and Dental Implants

Why good gum health care is so important for strong and healthy dental implants.

At the Confidental Clinic, dental implants are considered to be the gold standard when it comes to replacing missing teeth.

Although the procedure is highly sophisticated and can therefore take a little while to perform, most patients agree that they provide an excellent substitute for a lost natural tooth. Given that this is the case, and that, with the correct care, dental implants can last for over twenty five years, it is worth taking a look at the threat that gum disease can pose.

Not just teeth

We always stress, to all patients, and this applies also to our Purley dental implant patients, that it is not just the teeth that need to be kept clean and healthy, but our gums too. Whilst our gums may not have the visual aspect of our teeth, their health is key to having a healthy mouth and it is worth taking the time to look after them.

There are two key ways in which this should be done. Firstly, when brushing, ensure that you also brush your gums, placing the brush at approximately a forty five degree angle so that the bristles reach the gum line. The second way is to add flossing to your daily routine, if you already don’t. This is an excellent way of removing food debris and bacteria from between the teeth, where a toothbrush can’t reach.

Naturally, ongoing professional dental supervision should be continued too.

The threat to dental implants

There are two key stages of gum disease; gingivitis and periodontitis. The former often manifests itself in sore or bleeding gums and, with a little help from the hygienist at our Purley dental practice, can usually be reversed with a little care and attention. More of a problem is periodontitis. This advanced form of gum disease attacks not only the gum itself, but also the bone structure in which our teeth are held. Not only is this a problem for our teeth though, but also for any dental implant that has been placed into it.

Readers of the Confidental Clinic blog will know how the titanium implant integrates with the bone, over a period of time, and it is this that gives it its excellent strength and longevity properties. Where the bone has become compromised through periodontitis, it can weaken and eventually lose mass, leaving the dental implant less to ‘grip’ to. In some cases, this can even visually expose the titanium implant itself.

Once gum disease has reached this stage, it may be possible to rescue the teeth or dental implants through the use of a deep clean procedure. There is no guarantee that this will be successful though and avoiding gum disease altogether is the only guaranteed method! If you have dental implants and are unsure about how to best take care of your gum health, we are always more than happy to talk to you about this and help you to preserve your dental implants.

If you would like to talk to one of our Purley implant team about this, or any other aspects of dental implants, please call the Confidental Clinic on 020 8660 8923 to arrange an appointment.