Implant-supported dentures are overdentures that are connected to dental implants that support them. The posts of the dental implants are made of titanium and surgically embedded into the jawbone, as opposed to traditional dentures that rest on your gums without posts.
Implant-supported dentures are used for patients who don’t have any teeth in their jaw, but their jaw has enough bone mass to support dental implants. Once the implants are installed, we will snap the implant-supported dentures onto them via attachments.
Traditional dentures are usually unstable when placed on the lower jaw, so implant-supported dentures are designed for it. The upper jaw can hold traditional dentures in place quite well without the use of implants, but we can make implant-supported dentures for the upper jaw also. However, if an implant-supported denture is placed in the upper jaw, it can’t cover as much of the roof of your mouth (the palate) as a traditional denture can.
Every surgery involves certain risks, and dental implants also run the risk of failing. If you opt for bar-retained dentures, then you may experience other risks. A bar-retained denture is made of a narrow metal bar firmly connected to two or three implants.
Bar-retained dentures need adequate space for attachments on the denture framework, resulting in less space on the framework for the teeth to fit. This can cause the teeth to come loose. However, it is an easy matter to correct this.
We must also take care to balance the bar evenly on each implant post when we attach it to the implants. If the bar is not attached properly, the bar will experience too much strain and cause the screws to come loose. Screws can also loosen and parts of the denture can break if you grind or clench your teeth. The attachments and clips used for bar-retained dentures are made of nylon and wear over time, so we usually need to replace them once or twice a year.
Benefits of Implant-Supported Dentures?
Traditional dentures aren’t as secure as implant-supported dentures. Implant-supported dentures allow you to speak more easily and they won’t loosen or fall out of your mouth, which are problems tied to traditional dentures. You can eat certain foods you could not eat with traditional dentures, except for hard or sticky foods since these can harm the dentures.
Caring for Implant-Supported Dentures
It is recommended that you remove your implant-supported denture daily to clean it, as well as the adjacent attachments and gums. Like traditional dentures, you shouldn’t wear them when you sleep. Sometimes patients will ask for permanent crowns and bridgework. If this is what you want, then we will discuss this during your consultation to decide whether fixed or removable dentures are the best choice.
After we’ve placed the denture, we’ll check to ensure it’s secure. Even if it is, it can still shift a bit while you’re eating. This can cause the denture to rub against your gums and cause sore spots. We’ll also check your gums to make sure your bite is aligned properly.
For more information, please contact our office at 214-363-9946.