Dental implants are metal rods or screws that are inserted surgically into the jawbone. They not only replace the crown of a missing tooth; they also replace the dental root that allows the tooth to be stable in the mouth without having to be affixed to adjacent teeth. Once a dental implant has been inserted, it becomes secure in the bone through a process called osseointegration, which involves the fusion of the jawbone with the metal implant. The implanted rod or screw is made of titanium to lessen the chance of a negative immunological response from the jawbone or surrounding tissues.
If you are planning to have dental implant surgery, there are measures you can take to help ensure that it is a success. Here are a few of them:
Keep up the dental hygiene.
Although the tooth that the implant will be replacing is missing from your mouth, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene as the date of your implant surgery nears. Inadequate oral hygiene can result in gum inflammation that can progress into periodontitis. This condition can lessen the chance of a successful implant. The inflamed gum tissue may not be able to heal adequately around the implant site.
To avoid gum disease, it is important to keep the mouth as free of plaque and oral bacteria as possible. As a byproduct of glycolysis, oral bacteria release corrosive acid that decays the teeth and inflames the gums. Thus, by minimizing the amount of oral bacteria in the mouth, you can help protect your gums.
Don't smoke or chew tobacco.
Tobacco usage is associated with inflamed soft tissues in the mouth. People who smoke or chew tobacco may notice that oral wounds do not heal as quickly. This is partially due to a decreased amount of oxygen in the bloodstream of a smoker, along with the inflammation that results from tobacco exposure. If you are a smoker, it is best to stop tobacco use as soon as possible. The more time that your body has to heal from the exposure to tobacco, the better.
Make sure that your blood sugar is well-controlled.
Although people with diabetes have as high of a success rate as implant patients who do not have the condition, uncontrolled blood sugar can cause problems with a dental implant. Poorly controlled blood sugar affects the healing rate of a wound. In addition, it can make the implant patient more susceptible to an infection at the implantation site.
To learn more things that you can do to prepare for your upcoming dental implant surgery, schedule a consultation with your dentist. Visit http://www.charlottesvilledentistry.com/ for more info.