Implant Supported Dentures
What are Implant supported Dentures?
Implant supported dentures represent a significant advancement in restorative dentistry. This method of tooth replacement combines the convenience of full dentures and the security of dental implants.
Dental implants are titanium posts that mimic the foundation set by natural teeth roots. In the case of implant supported dentures, the implants act as anchors. On the one end of implant posts, there is the stability of bone tissue, which encases the titanium fixtures.
On the other end, the implant abutment provides a structure onto which the denture can be seated. This provides a better fit and greater stability than conventional dentures. The dentures are removed once a day for cleaning, otherwise, they remain in the mouth. Implant supported dentures provide comfort and improve your oral health and appearance.
“I have been a client of Dr. Slepchik’s clinic for the last ten years and I must say, he and his team are a great bunch! Professional, courteous and friendly. They make going to the dentist a wonderful experience!”
Implant Supported Dentures vs. Traditional Dentures
A traditional upper denture gains stability by covering the entire palate. The problem with this, which many people do not realize until after receiving their denture, is that the sense of taste is severely diminished without the sensory input naturally given by the palate.
A traditional lower denture is seated on top of the gums, where it gains stability only by fit and suction. In theory, when the acrylic arch fits over the gums and bony ridge of the lower mandible, it should naturally adhere. In practical usage, this rarely happens.
The problem with a traditional lower denture is that this fixture is quite unstable. Lower dentures are known for slipping out of place and even falling completely out when a person is speaking or eating. Understandably, people with traditional lower dentures often do not comply with recommended wear due to discomfort. These same people suffer ongoing bone deterioration related to the lack of stimulation provided by the denture.
Benefits of Implant Supported Dentures
- Bone preservation provided by ongoing stimulation through implant posts.
- The integrity of the facial structure is supported by continuous bone regeneration.
- No denture adhesive is necessary.
- No pressure spots and sores caused by unstable fixtures.
- May help you speak more clearly
- Functional chewing restores your ability to enjoy a balanced diet.
Patients who need tooth replacement or would like to upgrade from traditional dentures to implant supported dentures are good candidates. One of the most important aspects of dental implant success is the condition of the jawbone. Dental x-rays and a thorough exam are will help us confirm if a patient has sufficient bone density to hold the small implant posts that stabilize the denture. If substantial bone deterioration has occurred, bone grafting may be performed to build up a sufficient foundation for implants.
In addition to bone quality, Dr. Slepchik also evaluates overall dental health and general health. He does this to confirm the absence of conditions which may present risks to the integration of implant posts into the jawbone (osseointegration).
Implant Supported Dentures Process
Diagnostic Stage: As with all dental treatments, we complete a full assessment of facial features, bone structure, skin tone etc. This helps us determine how many implants are necessary and how to best redesign the smile. We also perform a complete oral examination to include digital x-rays. The final result must always look natural and highlight your face.
Surgical Stage: During this stage, we remove the teeth, if necessary. Two to four implants are placed after a specific healing period following the extraction procedure.
Restorative Stage: Your denture is fabricated using the retention supplied by the implants. The denture snaps in to place.
Recovery After Denture Placement
Implant supported dentures are far different than traditional dentures. As we mention, there are two stages involved in the active restoration of oral function. After the implants are inserted into the jawbone, bone tissue will begin to grow around them. This phase of recovery can take several weeks. However, patients are able to resume normal activities within a day or two after this stage of treatment. Patients can manage any mild discomfort with over-the-counter pain-relieving medication.Dr. Slepchik may recommend a soft-food diet for a short time to support the most efficient and rapid integration of implants into the jawbone. Once implant posts are stabilized by bone, the full denture can easily be snapped into place and full chewing function is restored.
How To Care For Implant Supported Dentures
Just like natural teeth need daily cleaning, so do implant supported dentures. Patients need to remove their dentures once a day to clean them thoroughly, as demonstrated by our hygiene staff. If you have any questions about how to properly clean your implant supported denture, please contact our office. We are happy to assist you.
In addition to cleaning the denture itself, daily hygiene around implants and gum tissue is critical to long-term oral health. Finally, maintain a consistent schedule with dental checkups and professional cleanings. These visits enable us to monitor gum and bone health and periodically evaluate the integrity of implants and other fixtures using x-ray imaging.