June 8, 2021
Dental implants are known for being the most reliable means of replacing missing teeth. With a 95% success rate, the procedure stands in a class of its own. Still, implants can fail if they’re not properly taken care of. One of the best ways to extend their life and promote excellent oral health is to perform consistent dental hygiene. To ensure the best results, here are some key tips for flossing dental implants.
Using a Floss Threader
Considered to be the most effective way to floss implants, the floss threader consists of a small handheld device with a loop on one end and a stiff flat edge on the other. Here are the steps for using it:
- Start by pulling around 18 inches of dental floss and thread it through the loop.
- Carefully insert the sharper edge between the gums and implants, moving from the cheek side toward your tongue.
- As the floss approaches your tongue, hold one end of the material and pull the floss threader in the opposite direction until the floss is underneath the tooth.
- Loop each end of the floss around your middle finger on each hand, and carefully work the floss up and down the sides of the nearest tooth or implant.
- When you’re done, release one hand so the floss can escape from beneath your teeth.
To clean the next section of teeth, you’ll simply repeat the same process.
Alternative Cleaning Methods
For some people, using the floss threader is a little too involved. Thankfully, there are some other ways to clean your teeth and gums. One alternative is to use an oral irrigator (also called a water flosser). The machine emits a pressurized stream of water that helps to free trapped particles and plaque.
There is also the option of using an interproximal brush, which is designed to get into the narrow spaces to remove debris. However, you should avoid the kind with a metal wire, as it could scratch your implants.
The Value of Safe and Effective Flossing
Committing to consistently and properly cleaning your teeth and gums will pay off majorly. One of its most important benefits is the prevention of gum disease, a condition that affects millions of Americans.
While achieving a thorough cleaning is always of the utmost importance, it’s equally crucial to take a careful approach. With diligent effort, you could very well be able to enjoy your brand-new smile for 30 years or more!
About the Author
Dr. David Earnest received his dental degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center. Throughout his career, he has remained an avid learner, taking several hours of continuing education to further sharpen his skills. Additionally, Dr. Earnest maintains professional affiliation with the Academy of Osseointegration and the International Congress of Oral Implantologists. He is thrilled to help patients get their lives back on track by placing dental implants at Seguin Dentures & Implants, and he can be reached for more information or to schedule a visit through his website.
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