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Pharmacy education Part 5 Caring for your implants

Implants are a great solution for many patients with missing teeth but what may not be known to all people is that implants require a lot of care and attention.

The gum surrounding the implant lack some of the defence mechanisms the gum around natural teeth has, which makes the area around the implant more susceptible to inflammation. Gum inflammation around implants is very common and studies show that up to 74 % of all patients with implants at one point or another have problems with inflamed gums around their implants. Symptoms can be bleeding, redness, swelling or pain from the implant site.

Gum inflammation, or peri-implant mucositis, is caused by bacterial plaque accumulation on the implant, especially along the gumline. At this stage, the disease is reversible if the patient starts to clean thoroughly. But if the plaque is not removed, the inflammation will grow, and in time, the bone around the implant will start to break down. The mucositis has developed into a condition called peri-implantitis. Without treatment, the bone-loss will continue, and the implant may eventually have to be removed.

So, since plaque is the main cause of diseases surrounding implants, let’s focus on how to keep the implants healthy!

Toothbrushing and Special brushes

Brushing with a regular toothbrush is a must, but with an implant bridge there can be a gap between the gumline and the prosthetic construction that the regular toothbrush has difficulties reaching. For this area we have developed the TePe Implant Brush with only two rows of bristles. This slim brush can be used on the outside of the implants – for the hard-to-reach inside surfaces we have the unique angled special brush, TePe Universal Care. Both brushes are designed to clean the important area where the gums and implants meet. Another special brush is the TePe Compact tuft, a single-tufted brush. The Compact Tuft brush has a small, firm and rounded tuft for precision cleaning along the gumline or around attachment and bars for overdentures.

Interdental cleaning

Cleaning the inside and outside is however not enough, the implants needs to be cleaned all around. The best option for cleaning in between the implants is the TePe Interdental brushes. The interdental brushes also come in extra soft that suite patients with sensitive gums around the implants. The extra soft brushes come in six different sizes.

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Clean around dental implants with TePe Bridge & Implant Floss

A product for cleaning under implant bridges is TePe’s Bridge and Implant floss with a spongy middle part and stiff ends to make the insertion easier. This is a great product and sometimes the only option when the space between the implant bridge and the gums is tight. The use of this floss does require some practice – remember that TePe has instructional videos that is a great help for patients and give advice regarding the use of different products. 

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Webinar - Caring for your implant

Please watch the webinar “Caring for your implant” for some more in-depth advice.