A broken smile can be quite the social liability. Replacing a missing tooth will help you to feel confident, but it can do much more than than that. For a healthy bite, you should fill the gap left by a missing tooth. A dental implant will help you to repair your smile, but in order for it to last like it should, you need to properly care for it.
Consequences of a Missing Tooth
You might take a stoic approach to tooth loss and decide that you won't let a jack-o-lantern smile slow you down. After all, isn't it true that a missing tooth is only a problem for the vain? No. A missing tooth can cause several problems for your bite. For one, tooth loss can lead to bone loss. The pressure of biting stimulates bone and encourages the bone to rebuild and reform in a constant effort to support your teeth. When you lose a tooth, this stimulation ceases and bone loss can follow. As you lose bone tissue, your teeth can shift position, which can reshape your bite and lead to jaw and tooth pain. A dental implant will stimulate your bone and help to maintain a healthy bite, so it is a good idea to get and properly care for an implant.
Care for a Prosthetic Tooth
The titanium root that an implant is made from and the porcelain that makes up the crown are impervious to the effects of plaque, but that doesn't mean you don't have to take care of them. In order to preserve the color of your crown, you should brush and floss regularly. Brushing and flossing will also help to maintain healthy gums; remember that gum disease can lead to tooth loss—that includes prosthetic teeth. Flossing will help remove food particles from the pockets created by your implant. You might consider brushing and flossing a no-brainer, but care for implants does not end here. A hygienist that uses metal tools around the base of an implant can make scratches that allow bacteria to get into your gums and promote gum disease. Thus, tell hygienists about your implant so that they can use the right tools for the job.
A dental implant can give you the shot of confidence you need to smile freely, but it will also help to keep your bite healthy. Considering what your implant does for you, it only makes sense to take proper care of it.