Dental Implant Gum Disease
A small percentage of our population is vulnerable to gum disease or periodontal disease. Gum disease or periodontal disease is the process whereby the bone around the necks of teeth begin to deteriorate and breakdown due to the presence of plaque around the teeth.
The development of gum disease is associated with a compromised immune system response. This means that gum disease has a significant genetic predisposition because the immune system reacts unfavourably to the presence of plaque around the teeth. This causes inflammation of the gums resulting in bone loss around the teeth.
Patients can still enjoy implant therapy even if they have a history of gum disease. The most important thing to do is to control the level of gum disease from reoccurring and this involves optimal plaque control to maintain dental health.
Prevent Gum Disease & Periodontal Disease
Patients that execute optimal plaque control measures have a lower risk of developing gum disease because the initial causative factor, being plaque, does not have a chance to initiate the immune system to release inflammatory markers that cause bone loss.
Patients that have a history of gum disease are encouraged to perform meticulous plaque control methods on a routine twelve hourly basis, using an electric toothbrush, quality fluoride toothpaste, flossing and using Piksters – and seek professional cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist every three to six months, to prevent gum disease.
The gum disease treatment studies show that patients with a vulnerability to periodontal disease who perform good plaque control and regularly remove the plaque from their implants and teeth both at home and professionally at the dentist, have a probability of success comparable to patients who don’t have any history of gum disease.
Symptoms of Gum Disease (Bleeding gums)
When it comes to gum disease or periodontal disease, the symptoms and warning signs can vary from person to person. However, there are some common symptoms that many people experience when they have gum disease. These symptoms include:
- Swollen or bleeding gums
- Sensitive teeth and gums
- Receding gum tissue (receding gums)
- Tender gum line
- Gum infection and gum inflammation
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Eventual tooth loss
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see your dentist as soon as possible. Gum disease is considered a serious condition and can lead to tooth loss if left untreated.
Benefits of Dental Implants for Patients with Gum Disease
A significant number of patients who have gum disease treated, receive dental implants. It is important that the gum disease is treated and under control, and that the patient’s gum health is stable. Patients who have a vulnerability to gum disease can be successfully treated with dental implants.
Implants replace missing or broken-down teeth and patients who have gum disease are more likely than most to lose their teeth. Patients with gum disease may be concerned about whether or not they are candidates for dental implants. The good news is that dental implants can be an excellent option for patients with gum disease. There are several benefits of dental implants for patients with gum disease, including the following:
- Dental implants can replace teeth that have been lost due to periodontal disease
- Dental implants can provide support for replacement teeth which can help improve chewing function and prevent further loss
- Dental implants can help to preserve the jawbone and prevent further deterioration of the jawbone associated with periodontal disease
- Dental implants can give patients a more aesthetic smile by replacing missing teeth
- Dental implants are a long-term solution that can last a many years with proper care and maintenance
Dental implants were designed for patients who have tooth loss risk factors, such as a history of periodontal disease. The majority of studies do show high levels of success and longevity especially when maintained carefully and appropriately. The position of the implant, the design of the implant and the experience of the clinician also play a role in the outcome of implant therapy long-term. If you are considering dental implants and have periodontal disease, be sure to talk to your Aria dentist about the right options for you.
Preparation for the Surgery
If you have been diagnosed with gum disease, your Aria dentist may recommend a dental implant to restore your smile. The first step in the dental implant process is to have a consultation with your dentist to see if you are a candidate for the procedure. During the consultation, your dentist will examine your mouth and take x-rays to determine if you have enough bone to support the implant and whether your gum disease has been treated. If you do not have enough bone, you may need to undergo a bone grafting procedure before getting the implant.
You may be referred to a specialist Periodontist to help you manage your gum or periodontal disease before you start your dental implant journey. Once your dentist is happy with your periodontal disease control, they will begin your implant treatment.
Once it has been determined that you are a good candidate for dental implants, the next step is to prepare for the surgery. This involves quitting smoking and taking certain medications to reduce the risk of infection. Your dentist will also give you specific instructions on how to brush and floss your teeth before surgery.
Aftercare Instructions Following Dental Implant Surgery
After your dental implant surgery, it is important to follow your aftercare instructions to ensure proper healing. These instructions will be provided to you by your dental surgeon, and may include:
– taking antibiotics as prescribed to prevent the risk of infection
– using a special mouth rinse to cleanse the area around the implants
– eating soft foods for the first few days after surgery
– avoiding hard or crunchy foods that could damage the implants
– brushing and flossing carefully around the implants
– avoiding smoking or using tobacco products
Patients with gum disease should be aware of the dental implant procedure and how it can help them. For those who are considering a dental implant who have gum disease, speaking with an experienced Aria dentist about all your options is highly recommended. With proper care, guidance and maintenance, patients can look forward to having improved oral health that lasts for years to come.