Caring for Your All-on-4® Treatment Concept
The number of people with any kind of dental implant has been increasing over time. In fact, the National Library of Medicine found that the number of middle-aged adults with dental implants has increased by about tenfold between 1999 to 2016.
Although the number of people has changed, the kinds of implants that exist in the market today have yet to do so. We still use the same concept, using posts on the jaws and screwed-on teeth above them. And while cleaning these standard implants is as simple as brushing and flossing, implant-supported arch bridges such as those using the All-on-4 treatment concept still take a different approach.
At San Tan Oral Surgery, we teach all of our patients how to clean for their new set of teeth right after we place them. However, it is always safe to occasionally give a friendly reminder, just to be certain they do know how to care for them.
How Cleaning Becomes Different
Caring for any kind of implant-supported bridge largely differs from cleaning regular teeth or single-tooth implant replacements. Usually, food sticks to the area between the gums and the bridge. If left uncleaned, the gums can have inflammation which makes the area feel painful.
To prevent this, we teach all of our patients how to use a water flosser to remove food particles in the gap between the gums and bridge. You should do this at least twice a day, passing through each corner until you are sure that there are no particles of food left.
You should also floss under the bridge. Using a string of strong floss, you should pass it through the gap between the bridge and the gums. Give it a forward and backward swiping motion like you would with regular teeth, but do it sideways until you reach the posts. If you find it hard to pass the floss through, you can use a floss threader to help. Simply tie it on the metal part and poke it through the gap. Do be careful, however, since you might hurt yourself by accident.
Lastly, you should choose a good, soft, sulcus toothbrush. This helps you clean the soft gum tissues that a regular toothbrush might not reach. Combined with regular brushing habits, doing these can ensure a good clean to make your All-on-4, implant-supported bridges last longer.
Is It Necessary to Remove the Bridge?
While we do loosen your implant-supported bridge during the first time, we generally do not recommend removing them completely just to clean them. The area between the bridges and the gums should form a good seal that keeps saliva from entering the gaps between the posts and the gums.
What we do recommend, however, is for you to tell us when it becomes too hard for you to clean. Whether you may be facing painful inflammation or difficulties with your hand dexterity, we at San Tan Oral Surgery will always want to help you get the most out of your replacement teeth. If you do experience these, please visit us or call us at (480) 604-2592 so we can schedule you for an appointment with us.
Mon, Tue, Thur: 8:00am to 5:00pm
Wed: By Appointment
Fri: 8:00am to 3:00pm
3303 S. Lindsay Rd. Suite 112
Gilbert, AZ 85297-1504
Office: (480) 604-2592