Who Are Good Candidates for Dental Implants?

When it comes to replacing missing teeth, it’s essential to understand the criteria that must be met to receive dental implants. Dental implants have revolutionized the field of restorative oral surgery, offering a reliable and long-lasting solution for replacing missing teeth. To ensure a successful implantation process, it’s important to consider the qualities that make an individual an ideal candidate. 


The Oral and Facial Surgery Institute is dedicated to providing transparent, effective care. Learn more about our services on our website or contact us today! 


Understanding Dental Implants


Dental implants go beyond cosmetic enhancements; they provide a functional and durable alternative to dentures or other replacement options. Composed of titanium posts and custom-made crowns, implants mimic the natural structure of teeth, offering benefits that extend beyond aesthetics. 


General Criteria for Dental Implants


Achieving success with dental implants requires a foundation of good oral heath and overall health. Healthy gums, sufficient bone density, and consideration of medical history are essential factors in determining candidacy. 


Specific Qualities of Good Candidates 


Age, commitment to oral hygiene, and psychological factors play crucial roles in identifying suitable candidates for dental implants. Even though you can’t technically be too old for dental implants, there are several age-related health factors that rule out candidacy for dental implants, including deteriorated bone density or significant gum recession


Health Conditions and Dental Implants 


Certain systemic health conditions and medications may influence candidacy. Specific conditions like diabetes and heart disease may contribute to adverse side effects or cause your body to reject the implant. Medications related to these conditions can also be a concern, specifically if you take insulin to regulate your blood sugar. 


Assessing Bone Density


Understanding the importance of sufficient bone density is vital in determining the success of dental implants. Dr. Davis will examine your bone density using X-rays, CT scans, and other imaging techniques. For an evaluation, schedule an appointment by contacting our office. 


Dental Implant Consultation Process


Schedule a Consultation: Visit our website or call our office to schedule a comprehensive consultation with Dr. Davis. 


Evaluation: Dr. Davis will use technology and other techniques to determine your candidacy for dental implants. Be sure to ask all of your questions. Our staff is happy to help you understand your condition and the impending procedure. 


Procedure: Before your appointment, check out our “New Patients” tab on our website to prepare for your upcoming surgery. 


Potential Challenges and Considerations 


While dental implants boast high success rates, it’s essential to acknowledge potential complications and risks. In some cases, dental implants may be rejected by the body. There is also potential for infection if the patient is not cared for properly following the procedure. Be sure to understand the extent of the procedure and make the best choice for your lifestyle. 




At the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute, we aim to provide the best care to each patient. Understanding the criteria for a good candidate for dental implants ensures a positive experience in our office and a successful implant procedure. Be sure to acknowledge the extent of the dental implant process and understand the after-care requirements of the procedure.

We are here to guide you to a healthier, happier smile. Dr. Davis and his talented team are here to provide a tailored treatment plan. Visit our website or connect with us on Instagram to learn more about our services and meet our team!

Pediatric Oral and Facial Surgery: When is It Necessary?

The health of a child’s smile is a critical element of their overall well-being, meaning maintaining optimal oral health is crucial from an early age. Let’s explore the vital role of Oral Surgeons in pediatric care, shed light on common concerns, signs, and symptoms, the evaluation process, and our approach to providing child-friendly care. 


Common Pediatric Oral and Facial Issues


Pediatric oral and facial issues are diverse, ranging from congenital abnormalities to facial trauma. Cleft lip and palate, impacted teeth, and accidents are among the challenges that may require surgical intervention. As parents and caregivers, understanding these conditions is fundamental for providing the best possible care for your child. 


Signs and Symptoms


Recognizing signs and symptoms early is key to addressing oral concerns in children to safeguard their development. From difficulty eating or speaking to abnormalities in facial structure, vigilant about these indicators allows for prompt intervention. 


Evaluation and Diagnosis 


Our friendly staff and welcoming environment ensure your child’s comfort while in our office. When examining a patient, Dr. Davis is very thorough, utilizing advanced imaging techniques and diagnostic tools. Technological advancements have played a significant role in providing precise diagnoses and allowing for highly specialized treatment plans. Contact us today to schedule a consultation! 


Types of Pediatric Oral and Facial Surgery


Tooth Extraction 


It may be suggested to have wisdom teeth, permanent teeth, or even baby teeth pulled if your child is experiencing crowding. Tooth extractions are often recommended for orthodontic reasons. Removing these teeth early can help with proper alignment of the jaw and improved facial structure. 




A frenectomy is a surgery to remove stra folds of soft tissue in the mouth, typically on the upper lip or under the tongue, especially for children born tongue-tied. Excess tissue in these areas can lead to speech or other problems and is often recommended for removal. 


Treatment of Injury or Trauma


As parents ourselves, we understand that accidents happen! Anything from a cut, knocked-out tooth, or a jaw fracture may require oral surgery. If you or your child experiences an emergency involving the mouth, please contact our office immediately. Our staff is always available to assist and answer your questions. 


Preparing for Pediatric Oral and Facial Surgery 


Our staff will provide guidelines for preparing your child after your evaluation with Dr. Davis. Feel free to ask questions and allow our staff to address your concerns. Understanding the preoperative process helps alleviate anxiety and contributes to a smoother experience for you and your child. 


Recovery and Follow-Up Care


The recovery process after the procedure will be carefully outlined, including follow-up appointments and ongoing care. Careful postoperative procedures ensure optimal recovery and the long-term success of the surgery. 



Pediatric oral care plays a crucial role in ensuring a child’s overall health and well-being. From addressing concerns to the procedure, Dr. Davis and his staff are here for your child’s unique needs. Recognizing signs early is vital, so schedule a consultation if you feel it’s necessary. Whether it’s a tooth extraction or trauma care, our focus is providing the best, child-friendly care possible. Trust our dedicated team to safeguard your child’s oral health. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Davis today!

Minimally Invasive Oral Surgery Techniques

At the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute, we strive to use the latest technology and precision in each of our procedures. Let’s discover innovative techniques that have allowed us to offer minimally invasive surgery to minimize trauma and enhance recovery for our patients. 


What Is Minimally Invasive Oral Surgery?


Minimally invasive oral surgery utilizes techniques to prioritize precision and efficiency, resulting in numerous benefits for both patients and surgeons. In many cases, MIS (Minimally Invasive Surgery) can result in less swelling, less pain, shorter hospital stays, and faster recovery times. How has this affected the oral surgery field? 


Common Minimally Invasive Oral Surgery Techniques


Laser Surgery

  • Laser technology has become a cornerstone in oral surgery. 
  • Applications in soft and hard tissue procedures. 
  • Benefits include reduced bleeding, faster healing, and minimal discomfort.



  • The use of microscopes in oral surgery for enhanced visibility. 
  • Precision at the microscopic level, allowing for delicate procedures.
  • Improved outcomes, especially in complex situations. 



  • Definition and applications of piezoelectric devices in oral surgery. 
  • Advantages in bone surgery: reducing risk of damage to surrounding tissues. 
  • Enhanced cutting precision for improved results.  


Advantages of Minimally Invasive Techniques 


Reduced Trauma

  • The impact on tissues and surrounding structures is significantly minimized. 
  • Faster healing and recovery times, allowing patients to return to daily activities sooner. 


Minimal Scarring 

  • Cosmetic benefits for patients, as incisions are smaller and less noticeable.
  • Improved patient satisfaction with aesthetic outcomes.


Lower Risk of Complications 

  • Decreased likelihood of postoperative complications. 
  • Enhanced safety profile for patients, ensuring a smoother recovery. 


Challenges and Considerations 


While minimally invasive techniques offer numerous advantages, it’s important to acknowledge potential limitations. Dr. Davis will discuss your eligibility for innovative procedures depending on the complexity of your required treatment. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and express your concerns during your consultation with our staff


Future Trends in Minimally Invasive Oral Surgery 


We anticipate more developments in oral surgery. From emerging technologies to innovative procedures, the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute remains committed to staying at the forefront of these advancements to provide our patients with the best possible care. 



At the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute, we are proud to champion minimally invasive oral surgery techniques. The benefits to our patients during and following procedures underscores our commitment to delivering superior care. If you are considering oral surgery, contact the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute. Schedule your consultation to begin your journey toward optimal oral health.

Recovery After Oral Implants

The process of placing implants has several steps, and recovery is one of the most important ones. Following any medical or oral procedure requires tedious aftercare and careful maintenance. After the long process of getting ready to receive your implants, you don’t want to compromise the procedure with poor hygiene or aftercare. Dr. Davis will discuss your specific care needs once your surgery is complete, but first we’ll discuss what to expect following your procedure to help you better prepare for your recovery. 


What to Expect After Oral Implant Surgery 


The recovery time for an oral implant procedure can take several months. As the bone begins to heal, the implant will start fusing into the bone and become part of your jaw. Titanium materials are used specifically because of their ability to bond with bone tissue and improve stability over time compared to other options. Following any oral surgery, aftercare is essential in the healing process. 


Side effects following surgery are expected. Over the first 24 hours, you might experience a nominal amount of bleeding from the site, some pain or discomfort, and most likely some swelling and bruising. Because we administer a local anesthetic for all procedures, you might still feel numb even if you have opted for general anesthesia. This numbness will wear off between six and 12 hours post-op. While your mouth is numb, be careful not to bite down on your tongue, cheek, or surgical site. It’s important to take pain medications and follow aftercare instructions as directed by Dr. Davis. 


Tips for Managing Pain and Discomfort


Pain management is one concern of many patients. Dr. Davis will prescribe pain medications following your procedure to help subside discomfort. Always follow specific instructions from your doctor when taking prescription medications. Reduce swelling with ice packs. Wrap the ice pack in a cloth to protect your skin from the cold. If you are experiencing significant bleeding, bite down on a piece of gauze for 30 minutes to help create a blood clot. Be sure to eat soft foods like yogurt, mashed potatoes, or apple sauce. Avoid smoking before your procedure and especially during recovery. 


Oral Care and Hygiene During Recovery 


Your implants and the surrounding area are highly susceptible to infection, and it’s essential to care for your implants during recovery and the entire lifespan of your implant. It’s vital to keep your mouth clean during your recovery. Maintaining oral hygiene during recovery can prevent infections and ensure successful implant integration. 


Your gums will be extra sensitive to brushing and flossing. Invest in a soft-bristled toothbrush and avoid heavy brushing near the implant site. Rinse the area thoroughly and regularly with salt water to help eliminate any possibility of infection. Avoid activities that could crack or damage your new implants, such as chewing on hard candies or ice or opening bottles with your teeth. The failure rate of implants is typically very low, but there is a direct correlation between smoking and tobacco use and dental implant failure. If you smoke, quitting before your procedure will boost your chances of a successful implant and smooth recovery. 


Follow Up Appointments and Care 


As discussed, taking extra care when brushing and flossing after getting implants is essential. Increase your oral hygiene habits following any treatment. If Dr. Davis requires follow-up visits, be sure to put them on the calendar and take any advice he has seriously to ensure a smooth route to recovery. Remember to stick to the aftercare instructions that we give you and discuss any concerns with our office. Once recovered, be sure to implement new practices when maintaining oral hygiene. 


It’s important to discuss any significant discomfort with your Oral Surgeon following your procedure. Be aware of the signs of infection, including fever, unusual drainage, or redness around the site. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact us immediately. If you feel concerned about a specific element of recovery, contact the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute for additional tips on caring for your new implants. 

How Oral Facial Surgery Can Correct Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea and oral surgery might not sound directly related, but they are. Typically oral surgery is not the first step in treating sleep apnea; however, it might be the next stop in some patients’ situations. Sleep apnea refers to any breathing interruption when a person is asleep. Interrupted breathing is taxing to the brain and body. Oral or facial surgery might be the most effective option to correct any sleep interruptions you might be experiencing. There are various procedures available to help correct sleep apnea. Dr. Davis at Utah Oral and Facial Surgery Institute can help address your concerns. Let’s better understand what’s in store when treating sleep apnea. 


What is sleep apnea?


Sleep apnea refers to any interruption that occurs during sleep. When experiencing sleep apnea, the tissues in the back of the throat collapse and block your airway while you sleep. This can happen for several seconds or up to a minute. After a minute, your brain wakes up just enough to restart breathing, and in some cases, this can happen over 500 times per night. You will never enter a deep sleep cycle if you are frequently experiencing breathing issues during the night. 


Why is it important to treat sleep apnea?


Sleep apnea can be linked to many health concerns, especially if not treated. Because you are not getting enough sleep, you are probably experiencing fatigue and sleepiness throughout the day. You might even be experiencing headaches and some irritability. Sudden drops in blood oxygen can increase blood pressure causing strain on your cardiovascular system and increasing your risk of coronary artery disease, heart attacks, heart failure, and strokes. 


Certain medications or anesthesia might relax your upper airway, but because they are sedatives, this can worsen obstructed airways. Major surgery, especially after sedation, can cause people with obstructive sleep apnea to be more prone to complications following their procedure. 


Snoring and restless sleep can cause someone sleeping next to you to be sleep-deprived because of your condition. Sleep deprivation might eventually disrupt relationships and cause partners to sleep in the other room. Don’t let sleep apnea disturb your health or personal relationships. Contact OFSI today to consult Dr. Davis regarding your obstructive sleep apnea. 


What kinds of surgeries are associated with sleep apnea?


There are various surgeries to attempt to correct sleep apnea if conservative treatments are not working for you. There are several options available to discuss further, but here are some of the procedures we recommend if you are looking for a permanent solution: 


  • Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, or UPP
  • Nasal Surgery
  • Soft Palate Implants
  • Hyoid Advancement 
  • Tongue Surgery 
  • Jaw Surgery 
  • Tracheostomy 

Considering the health concerns sleep apnea can cause, there are plenty of reasons why you might need to get treated sooner than you think. In some cases, conservative treatments, such as an oral appliance or a CPAP machine, might not effectively treat sleep apnea. Oral surgery might be the next step in treating your sleep apnea. For many patients, oral surgery can permanently end sleep apnea and snoring. That said, consult Dr. Davis at Utah Oral and Facial Surgery Institute to determine if oral surgery is the best option for you!

Why is it Important to Replace Missing Teeth?

Missing teeth can be harmful to your oral health. After losing a tooth or multiple teeth, your remaining teeth will shift to fill the gap left behind, and your body will absorb bone tissue in the jaw to be used elsewhere. An implant might be necessary to prevent bone loss and misalignment of teeth. The Oral & Facial Surgery Institute team is well-versed in replacing teeth and has multiple procedures available to you. 


Prevent Loss of Bone Tissue


After losing a tooth, bone loss can begin just six months following the loss. Over time the bone loss can cause facial sinkage altering your face shape. The sinkage is caused by the chewing force no longer stimulating the jawbone. This results in your body absorbing the tissue in your bone to be used elsewhere, which is called reabsorption. Bone loss and tissue loss can increase the risk of losing other teeth. Implants are artificial teeth, with the implant or ‘screw’ being the new ‘root.’ The new implant will prevent any further bone loss. 


If you have experienced bone loss and have been told you are ineligible to receive implants, reach out to our office for a better solution that might fit your situation called Teeth in a Day. Contact Dr. Davis at the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute for a Teeth in a Day consultation! In this procedure, we will completely replace your smile in just one day with four implants to hold your dentures securely in your mouth.


Keep your Bite Even 


Your teeth will naturally shift to close the gap a missing tooth leaves. After your teeth have begun to move, your upper and lower arch will meet at an awkward and unnatural position, which can cause discomfort. Being uncomfortable may cause you to favor one side of your mouth when chewing. Favoring one side over another can lead to facial asymmetry, meaning your face shape will begin to change. When your teeth shift, your teeth will become misaligned or crooked. Crooked teeth are increasingly difficult to clean and maintain. Misalignment of teeth can result in cavities or further tooth loss.


Prevent Overgrowth


Gaps in the teeth cause teeth to shift horizontally, but they can also affect their growth. Opposing teeth, directly below or above missing teeth, can grow longer to fill the space between teeth. When no tooth is opposite to an existing tooth, there is no force to communicate to the jaw to maintain its position. Dental implants can be the force to tell the tooth to maintain its position. 


Retain Function 

The main functions of teeth are to bite, grind food, and help you speak. Missing a tooth can affect how you eat hard or chewy foods. Rather than opting for soft food options because of discomfort, you can expand your diet simply by replacing a missing tooth. Gaps in teeth can change how air flows through the mouth, altering speech and the pronunciation of words. In severe cases, it can cause you to develop a speech impediment. 


Improve Visual Smile


Having a friendly smile has been proven to have many social, professional, and emotional benefits. You might be experiencing insecurities surrounding your missing teeth, and replacing missing teeth can improve self-esteem. As mentioned, missing teeth can cause bone loss or favor one side of your mouth when chewing and cause facial asymmetry. Replacing missing teeth can improve your self-esteem, making you more excited to show off your smile! 


Schedule a Consultation


Missing teeth can affect not only your oral health but your mental health as well. When missing, your remaining teeth will naturally shift or overgrow to fill the gap. When teeth shift, they can cause misalignment and crooked teeth making you more susceptible to cavities and further tooth loss. Bone deterioration can begin as soon as six months after losing a tooth. Restoring your smile can relieve pain, and you start eating your favorite foods again. If you are experiencing tooth loss or any discomfort surrounding it, it might be time to weigh your options for replacing teeth. 


Dr. Davis and his incredible staff are willing to direct your journey to a new smile. Replacing missing teeth can be a simple procedure at the Oral & Facial Surgery Institute with the Teeth in a Day program. 


How Long Do Dental Implants Last?

Dental implants are the best option for replacing teeth. If you have teeth that have been broken, or missing, or if you are experiencing issues with dentures, dental implants could be a better solution for you. Dr. Davis encourages dental implants because they are more permanent than other options and can be more comfortable. Depending on oral care and other lifestyle choices, dental implants will last a lifetime. Choosing dental implants over other solutions can be a tough decision, but our team at Oral & Facial Surgery Institute can help answer your questions and devise a plan tailored to your situation.

Why Implants?


Replacing a tooth can help a patient’s self-esteem, correct chewing patterns, and prevent bone in the jaw from deteriorating. Dental Implants are used when a patient is missing a tooth or multiple teeth. They are the closest to natural teeth because they are made of porcelain which resembles the hardness and appearance of natural teeth. The implant is comprised of three separate parts:

  1. Implant: Titanium or zirconia post resembling a screw embedded into the jawbone and serves as the root for the new crown. The post bonds with teeth through a process called osseointegration. 
  2. Abutment: This is a fastener to hold the implant to the crown. 
  3. Crown: The crown is a false tooth mounted to the abutment providing the appearance and functionality of a natural tooth. 

Dental implants are sturdy and meant to have some wear and tear as time goes on. However, the crown is the most visible piece of an implant, which makes it more susceptible to damage. Implants located at the back of the mouth are used more frequently, which means they will wear more quickly than an implant near the front. The abutment and the crown are most commonly damaged and replaced. Replacing either of these pieces is inexpensive and can be done relatively quickly. Be sure to notify our office if you are experiencing any discomfort from a damaged implant. 

Increase the Longevity of Your Implant

Dr. Davis recommends regular brushing and flossing for all his patients, especially those who have received an oral implant or any oral procedure. Assuming that you are attending routine checkups and maintaining a proactive oral hygiene routine, the screw portion of the implant should last a lifetime. The crown section of the implant lasts about 10-15 years before you may need a replacement due to normal wear and tear. Depending on the age you receive your implant, you may never need to replace a crown. 

Along with your oral hygiene habits, other things factor into the overall maintenance of your implants. Your lifestyle and diet choices can affect your overall oral health. Drinking and smoking are leading causes of gum disease which can adversely affect your implants, not only the crown but also the tissue surrounding the implant abutment or ‘screw.’ 

In the end…

Dental implants can be a life-changing decision on the road to improving your quality of life and oral health. Maintaining your implants is very important in increasing their longevity. As you learn to care for your implants, be strict with your oral hygiene habits and adjust your lifestyle where necessary. This could help your implants last longer than the projected 10-15 years. If you are considering implants or experiencing discomfort with a previous solution, consult Dr. Davis and his experienced staff at Oral & Facial Surgery Institute to discuss an effective treatment plan.

When Should I Have My Child Evaluated for Wisdom Teeth Extration

Over 90% of Americans have their wisdom teeth removed. Impacted wisdom teeth are the most prevalent medical and developmental disorder, making wisdom tooth extraction a general preventative procedure that we perform. As your child enters their teenage years, it might be necessary to take them to a dentist to evaluate their wisdom teeth by performing a panoramic x-ray. Often a dentist will refer you to an oral surgeon, like Dr. Davis, for this procedure. Early evaluation and knowledge of the symptoms of emerging wisdom teeth can help determine when your child might be ready to schedule an appointment with the Oral Facial Institute for removal. 

Why Remove Them? 

Wisdom teeth can cause discomfort as they emerge. They are also very prone to complications if left in the mouth for too long. Most people do not have room in their mouths to allow wisdom teeth to grow correctly, causing them to become impacted. Without space to emerge, wisdom teeth apply pressure on the rest of the teeth causing other teeth to shift in the jaw. If the teeth have room to grow, they are still in a hard-to-reach position and encroach on a major nerve in the jaw as the roots develop. 

Because the teeth are located so far behind the second molars, it becomes difficult to clean them properly, which can cause a buildup of plaque and bacteria. As plaque accumulates on the back teeth, cavities form on the second and third molars. Not only can decay in the form of cavities occur, but a large number of bacteria can also cause soft tissue infections, cysts, and other abnormalities around the teeth. 

What Are the Signs

Wisdom teeth take a significant amount of time to develop completely. However, early detection can allow monitoring before determining whether the teeth need removal. As your child nears age 16, your dentist might point out the growth of the third molars on an x-ray at a regular appointment. When these teeth emerge, they tend to cause some discomfort, although some patients might not experience any. If your child is experiencing pain at the back of their mouth, wisdom teeth could be the suspect cause. 

The common symptoms or signs that the third molars might be erupting include: 

  • Pain
  • Infection
  • Facial Swelling
  • Swollen Gums

Bottom Line

Wisdom tooth extraction is very common. As your child nears age 16, their wisdom teeth are most likely emerging. Whether your child is experiencing any signs or symptoms, it could be a sign to consider an assessment with our Oral Facial Institute team. Dr. Davis can offer your child an accurate evaluation and timeline for wisdom tooth extraction. 

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Davis and his trusted team at the Oral Facial Institute for a consultation for Wisdom Teeth removal today! 

Issues Caused by Impacted Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are your third molars that typically begin to emerge between the age of 17 and 25. They can become impacted if they don’t have enough room to come in or develop normally. Neglecting to have impacted wisdom teeth removed can cause dental problems. On the other hand, some wisdom teeth are without issues, and the teeth line up with the others and don’t require removal. 

What causes the tooth to become impacted? 

A tooth may only partially emerge or never break through the gums. Whether the tooth is partially or fully impacted, the tooth can grow in a variety of directions: at an angle towards the second molar, an angle toward the back of the mouth, toward the other teeth, or essentially ‘lay down’ in the jawbone or even grow straight but become trapped in the jawbone. 

Do I have Impacted Wisdom Teeth? 

It is essential to be aware of the signs of impacted wisdom teeth. Impacted wisdom teeth don’t always present symptoms, but they can become infected and present these signs or symptoms: 

  • Unpleasant taste in your mouth 
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Jaw pain
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Bad breath 
  • Swelling around the jaw
  • Difficulty opening your mouth

Longterm Consequences & Complications

Impacted teeth can cause several issues in the mouth. Impacted teeth can invade space near the second molar, which increases the risk of infection. The pressure from the tooth can cause teeth to shift and require orthodontic treatment to realign your teeth. Because of the location of your wisdom teeth, they can be tough to clean; this can leave food trapped between the gum and the partially erupted tooth. 

Because a partially impacted tooth is more difficult to clean, this increases the risk of developing a painful inflammatory gum condition called pericoronitis. Cysts can also develop within the jawbone, causing damage to nerves, teeth, and the jawbone. 

Will an Impacted Tooth Fix Itself? 

The short answer is no. Impacted teeth are stuck and will not resolve on their own. Without treatment, impacted teeth will continue to cause discomfort, cavities, and gum disease. If you are experiencing any symptoms of an impacted tooth, please contact Dr. Davis at Utah Oral and Facial Surgery Institute to set up a consultation.

Maintaining Oral Implants

Caring for dental implants is not a demanding task. Obviously, some things differ from regular maintenance. Learning how to make necessary adjustments to your routines can increase the longevity and overall health of your implants. 

What are Oral Implants?

Oral Implants are put in place after losing a tooth, whether to disease or injury. The loss of a tooth can cause many issues, including rapid bone loss, speech issues, or changes to chewing patterns. These things can often cause extreme discomfort, both physically and in self-esteem. Receiving an implant can significantly improve the overall quality of life for the patient. 

After receiving an implant procedure, patients should be aware of the healing process, best practices when caring for implants, and things to avoid to protect the integrity of the implant. The longevity of the implant relies on attentive care and knowledge of the implant itself. 

Implants have three structures that make up the entire implant. The crown is the visible portion of the implant that is at risk of breaking or deteriorating over time. There are two systems below that attach to the jaw and keep the implant in line with the gums. These systems are not visible but require care, especially directly following the procedure. 


Things to Avoid 

Following the initial procedure, be sure to follow the oral hygiene instructions provided by the surgeon. The main things to avoid are smoking, using a straw, spitting, and touching the surgical site with the tongue or fingers. Following these directions can help avoid infection and prevent potentially dislodging the blood clot that has formed. 

The products you usually use may be too harsh to use on an implant. Your toothbrush bristles, if too rough, can irritate the gums around the implant, which can cause intense discomfort or pain. Consider trading your flavored (i.e., mint or cinnamon) toothpaste and mouthwash with sensitive cleaning products instead. 

Avoid certain foods such as caramel, dried fruits, hard candies, and steak. These foods can result in damage to the implant as well as the surrounding teeth. Abstaining from smoking and drinking alcohol is not only good for your overall health but is necessary for the healing process. Implants take about six months to heal. Alcohol slows down the healing process and can cause implants to take more time to heal; this should be avoided as much as possible.  


Best Practices 

Be sure to visit the dentist regularly. Receiving routine cleanings can help upkeep oral health. These visits should be scheduled twice yearly. Any signs of irritation or infection shouldn’t be taken lightly. Schedule an appointment with a dentist or surgeon as soon as possible. 

Swapping products such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, and mouthwash is extremely beneficial to the long-term health of implants. Choosing a nylon brush with gentle bristles can help avoid scratching the surface of your implants. Not flossing regularly is detrimental to oral health in general, but now that implants are present, this can cause even further damage. There is a wide range of specific types of floss for implants meant to prevent irritation. 

Caring for dental implants is not a demanding task. Some things differ from regular maintenance, but making necessary adjustments to your routines can increase the longevity and overall health of your implants. 

For other questions or concerns regarding the care of your implants, reach out to Dr. Shawn Davis at the Oral and Facial Surgery Institute here!