Many people are missing a complete arch of upper or lower teeth or both arches and rely on full dentures to replace them. Ordinary dentures consist of a gum-coloured acrylic base supporting life-like teeth. The acrylic base relies solely on the gums and underlying jawbone for support.
Initially, full dentures can fit quite well, but problems occur as the jawbone begins to change shape and resorb, resulting in the denture becoming increasingly less retentive, so it starts to slip and move around uncomfortably. Loose dentures can make eating difficult, and talking and socializing with others may become embarrassing. Denture adhesives are one option, but they can be messy and expensive. An implant-supported denture offers a long-term solution, providing teeth that feel stable and strong and will not move out of place.
What is an Implant Supported Denture?
An implant denture looks exactly like an ordinary denture, but instead of resting on the gums, it is supported by several dental implants. A dental implant is a small screw or post surgically inserted into the jawbone. The surgical procedure needed to fit dental implants is quite short as the procedure is meticulously pre-planned, and there is no need to worry as we ensure it is painless. Once the dental implants are in place, they are fitted with special attachments. These attachments clip into special attachments on the denture’s fitting surface (the surface covering the gums). Once the denture is clipped in place, it cannot move but is easily removable for cleaning.
Why Choose an Implant-Supported Denture?
Instead of worrying that teeth will move out of place when talking or eating with others, you can rely on them staying firmly in position. You won’t need to use any messy and expensive denture adhesives. You will find your biting strength increases as your teeth cannot move so that you can enjoy a greater range of foods more comfortably, but you will still need to avoid very hard or sticky foods that could break or damage your denture. When you have a wider choice, choosing nutrient-dense foods that will help protect your overall health and fight infection and disease more effectively can be easier.
Implant-supported dentures require fewer dental implants for support compared with a full arch bridge. Because fewer implants are needed, treatment is very affordable. The implants can be inserted towards the front of your jaw, where the bone is naturally thicker and stronger, so the need for bone grafting is usually avoidable. Additionally, dental implants help to protect the jawbone surrounding them, stimulating this bone and preventing further resorption that naturally occurs after bone loss.
An implant-supported denture is easy to care for as you simply remove it for cleaning and while cleaning around the dental implants. Dr. Shima and our friendly dental team at Bel Canto will show you exactly how to care for them, and we are always here to offer more advice and information.
Who Can Have Implant-Supported Dentures?
Implant-supported dentures are a good option for anyone missing a complete arch of teeth. You need to have reasonable dental and general health, and if you currently smoke, we will urge you to quit. Smoking can slow down healing after implant surgery and increase the risk of implant failure. Age is generally not a barrier, provided you are over eighteen, and your jaws have finished developing. Dental implants have helped many older people, including those well into their eighties or nineties. You are never too old to enjoy the benefits of strong, stable teeth and an attractive smile.