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Stainless steel instruments for implants?

My doctor recently read an article about scaling/probing implants with stainless steel instruments, instead of the past recommended plastic. They concluded that it is better to scratch the implant rather than leave the calculus there. Does anyone know where I can find this article? I’ve searched everywhere with no luck!

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1 Answer

Plastic instruments can leave residue on implants which can lead to peri-implantitis. Some periodontists and others state stainless steel instruments are fine to use. However, they are harder than the implant itself and can scratch. A scratch to bacteria is like the Grand Canyon to a human. Meaning you are adding surface area for bacteria to colonize. Why take the risk? Patients pay a lot for implants and I personally wouldn’t want to damage the surface. Titanium instruments are widely recommended for use on implants. You want to make sure the titanium instruments you use have a Rockwell hardness scale less than the implant itself as to not scratch the implant. I am not aware of an article that states scratches are better than calculus. Again, I see calculus or scratches as excess area for bacteria to colonize. If your doctor shares the article with you, I’d love to read it, see the source and the research behind the suggestion.

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