Is it OK to Brush Implants with Toothpaste?

E., a dental hygienist, asks:
I am a dental hygienist and come in contact with a lot of patients that have dental implants. I have one particular patient that has implants in place in her mandible and is wearing an overdenture that clips on to the implants. I know to use plastic scalers to scale and I usually polish with “Shimmer” [NUPRO] brand polish paste to help remove the plaque that remains on the implants. The patient asked me however if she was allowed to use toothpaste she buys at the store to brush them or if she only had to use water and a small brush. Is it okay for her to brush those implants with any toothpaste as long it is cream based and does not have any abrasive in it?

8 Comments on Is it OK to Brush Implants with Toothpaste?

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The best way to keep implants clean at home is to use a "Waterpik". I can't see why tooth brush and paste should be an objection. I ask my patients to keep them clean using all means possible.
Alejandro Berg
I also recommend water pik irrigation , but most of my patients use electric toothbrush so I tell them to use prevident 5000, as their toothpaste (it has almost no abrasives and is great for implants too)
Don Callan
Be careful using the water-pik irrigation, there is only an epithelial attachment to the implant surface, there is not a connective attachment and some material may be forced into the sulcus.
That was an eye opener Dr Don Callan. Can you elaborate from your experiences, what can go wrong and how. Thank you.
Dr. Alex
I have been visiting a tradeshow in Brazil last January. I've seen a toothpaste manufacturer, claiming to be the only one specialized on dental implants. They showed me a study proving that fluoride has a corrosive factor over titanium (which they had avoided on their formula). Does anyone else heard anything like it? Thank you.
That's another eye opener
Michael Johnson
I like the message by Dr. Callan. the epithelial attachment is very weak to the implant. I have seen damage to this "attachment" with electric toothbrushes so I now stress no electric toothbrushes on implants. Patients seem to think if a little brushing is good, scrubbing is better and this leads to recession. I do, however, recommend the water pik and gentle brushing with a soft brush.
Nathalie Beck
I am using a toothpaste specially made for dental implants and natural teeth. There is no fluor in it because of the corrosive effect on Titanium. It contains natural oxygen from honey enzymes to clean the pockets around the implant. The taste is ok. Brandname is bluem (from the Netherlands)

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