Did you know you are still susceptible to gum disease even if you have dental implants?
Implants aren’t a quick fix – once they are in you don’t just leave them, there is a lot of work that goes into maintaining them after you’re treatment, and yes I’m sorry to say you can still get gum disease around implants.
What is gum disease?
Periodontal (gum) disease is caused by bacteria in plaque. If allowed to accumulate in the mouth, plaque can cause your gums to become red and swollen. This is called gingivitis, but this form of gum disease is reversible…
In some cases, the disease will progress to a more severe form of gum disease known as periodontitis, this is now irreversible. This is where gum next to the plaque peels away from the tooth, forming a ‘gum pocket’. The bone beneath this pocket is eaten away over time.
This bone supports your teeth, so this destructive process can result in loosening of the teeth and eventually even their loss.
But if I have implants how can this happen?
Peru-mucositis is a term used for Bleeding, inflamed and sore gums; the same properties as the condition called gingivitis in your natural teeth.
Bleeding and sore gums are a sign of irritation and inflammation. As mentioned earlier it is common when a buildup of plaque and bacteria is left at your gumline. They may bleed when you brush, or when using your interdental aids, do not be alarmed and do not stop brushing.
You need to DO the following:
- Ensure you are cleaning thoroughly and mechanically removing the plaque
- Using an antibacterial mouthwash for no more than 7 days to help reduce bleeding
- Do not stop brushing or using your interdental aids because of the bleeding, it will only get worse
- If problems persist contact your closest Evo Clinic
Peri-Implantitis (Gum Disease around Implants)
Peri-Implantitis is an infectious disease that causes inflammation of the gum and the bone structure around a dental implant. Chronic inflammation causes bone loss, which can lead to a loose implant that eventually could fall out. Exactly the same characteristics as Periodontitis in your natural teeth.
It can be caused by the following factors:
- Patient-related factors including systemic diseases (e.g, diabetes, osteoporosis)
- Social factors such as inadequate oral hygiene, smoking, and drug abuse
Dental implant infection signs include:
- Bad taste/bad breath that does not go away.
- Pus or bleeding of the gums or implant area.
- Pain or fever
Dealing with this can be lengthy so prevention is key, at your maintenance visits these are the conditions we will be looking for so do not worry we will constantly be monitoring your implants throughout their life span.
The upside to dental implants and your EvoSolution is they function just like your natural tooth. The downside is, they are capable of becoming diseased just like a natural tooth. With a proper oral health routine, your dental implant can last. After all, implants are a long-term investment in your smile, your health and your wellbeing, so its best to protect your investment!
By Lauren McGovern, Dental Therapist at EvoDental