Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations
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Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations

Dental implants can make a smile look fabulous – I know I have them. However, if you are just thinking about getting them, you may have a lot of questions. You may be wondering how smoking affects implants, whether or not wine will stain them, if they can be whitened or other concerns. I also know from experience that it can be intimidating to ask some of these questions to your dentist. In my dental implant blog, I am going to answer the questions that can be hard to ask. I hope you find the info you need in this blog and that it guides you to the right decision about dental implants. Thanks for reading!

Dental Implants: Stains, Whitenings and Other Considerations

Flossing Around Your Dental Implant: What's the Best Way?

Isobel Berry

Dental implants are a significant undertaking. The implantation itself is a minor, though perfectly straightforward, surgical procedure requiring ample healing time. There's also the cost to consider. Given the time, money, and general effort involved in receiving this type of permanent tooth replacement, you need to take care of your new dental implants. Does this involve flossing?

The Prosthetic Dental Crown

There can be some reluctance to floss around a dental implant. You might think that the motion and pressure of the dental floss may be able to dislodge the prosthetic dental crown. This is simply not possible, since the crown is permanently bonded to the implant, which is anchored in your jaw bone. While flossing won't technically physically damage an implant, some care needs to be taken, and it's for this reason that traditional dental floss might not be the best choice.

Gum Tissues

If you didn't regularly floss prior to receiving your implant, you're at a disadvantage. You may not have refined your technique, and while a shoeshine-style of buffing is preferable when using floss, it's possible to floss too aggressively when you're unfamiliar with the process. This can be hazardous to the gum tissues surrounding the implant. While these tissues healed in place to form a protective seal, excessive and aggressive flossing can break this seal, creating an access point for harmful oral bacteria (which can lead to an infection).

Floss Threads

Another potential flossing issue with dental implants is the quality of the floss itself. Low-quality floss, especially when coupled with an improper technique, can leave minute threads of floss between your teeth. Broken threads of floss can become lodged between the implant and its surrounding gingival tissues. Though unlikely, this can lead to an infection of the implant site. So does this mean you shouldn't floss around a dental implant?

Alternatives to Standard Floss

Instead of using standard floss, you will need another tool to remove food debris from around your implant, so it's not as though you should avoid flossing altogether. An interdental brush allows for the necessary precision to clean between your teeth without any of the dangers to your implant posed by standard floss. An oral irrigator is also an option, which is a flossing system that uses a precise jet of water to clean between your teeth, without the implement making any physical contact with your mouth. 

Your dental implant requires a high standard of oral care, and even though flossing can be problematic, there are several ways to achieve the same results without using actual floss.