Do I still need regular cleanings and check-ups if I have implants?

    Dental implants are incredibly durable, have a 97% success rate, and can often last for an entire lifetime — if you take care of them properly.

    People with only one or a few implants need to maintain a regular 6-month schedule for their cleanings and checkups for obvious reasons: they still have natural teeth, so that goes without saying.

    But some patients mistakenly believe that if you have a mouth full of dental implants, you don’t need to keep seeing your dentist and hygienist for routine cleanings and checkups. They think, “Why do I need to see a dentist if I have false teeth that can’t decay?” Fair question.

    Dental implants require the same care as real teeth — brushing, flossing, mouthwash, and, of course, regular dental check-ups. Even if you only have all dental implants and no natural teeth left, you still need regular cleanings and check-ups. If you have dental implants, your hygienist will simply follow a different regimen to clean them, using special instruments to clean them properly. And instead of checking for cavities, they will examine your gums for any signs of gum disease, as well as any signs or symptoms of an infection of dental implants, called *peri-implantitis. (*a pathological condition occurring in tissues around dental implants, characterized by inflammation in the peri-implant connective tissue and progressive loss of supporting bone.)

    Keeping your teeth healthy requires routine maintenance and professional cleaning – and that also applies to dental implants.

    How often will I need to come in?

    Typically, we see our implant patients twice a year. Sometimes more often. The protocol varies slightly from one patient to another, depending on a variety of factors relevant to their personal situation. Your dentist will recommend a schedule according to your needs.

    What if I have a removeable implant prosthesis (like an implant overdenture)?

    Even if you are able to keep your prostheses looking very clean, because you take them out to brush them every day, you should still be seen for 6-month checkups and professional cleanings, to assure the health of your implants. We can help clean your dentures properly, and remove deeper stains and tartar from your prostheses when needed. Also, we will be able to keep an eye on any clips, snaps or attachments that occasionally need to be changed. This keeps things tight and more useful. Additionally, we periodically take x-rays to verify the health of the implants and supporting bone.

    If you are missing any teeth, are looking for alternatives to dentures, or if you just want to learn more about dental implants, Dr. McFadden and his team at The McFadden Dental Implant Center can help. Call today to schedule a consultation with Board Certified Prosthodontist, Dr. David McFadden at (214) 956-9100. Our consultation visit is complimentary, and includes all necessary x-rays.