If you already have dentures, it may be possible for you to get dental implants. In fact, the more you learn about dental implants, the more you will come to desire them.
They provide stability to your dentures and can enable you to get rid of some of the problems that denture wearers face.
Problems with Dentures
If you currently have dentures, you’re probably already aware of several problems. Dentures can slip at the most inappropriate time – such as when you’re talking, eating or drinking. They can also produce sores on your gums.
One thing you may not have noticed is that when teeth are missing, the jawbone under them is shrinking.
This can be as much as 25 percent in width just in the first year. Height is also lost. This shrinkage will affect your face, causing your chin to collapse – making you look older.
In order to restore the bone size and height, which may be needed for dental implants, it’s often necessary to conduct a bone graft. This process can restore a more youthful appearance.
There are several ways to do this, but you need to be aware that it can take three to six months for it to heal. It will have to be completely healed before the implants can be placed.
In other situations, bone grafts may not be necessary. If your goal is not the younger appearance, but instead you just want some functioning teeth, then you may opt for the four-on-one dental implant system.
The positioning of the implants may enable you to avoid the necessity of getting bone grafts.
Dental implants can also be used to stabilize your current dentures if they are in good shape.
Because attachments will have to be added to the dentures, some dentures may not be usable with this system.
It only requires two implants for this, but four are better and can make your teeth usable immediately.
Once they are installed, you will quickly notice several advantages. This system can be used on upper or lower teeth.
You will no longer have to worry about your dentures slipping, which will give you greater self-confidence when you smile and are around people.
Implant supported dentures will also enable you to eat what you want because you can increase your biting force, and they will feel more natural than dentures.
The All on 4 Dental Implants
An implant system called the all on four dental implants can give you implants in one day.
This process extracts the remaining teeth (if any), places the implants, and attaches an extension.
The denture is then attached to it enabling you to have usable teeth in a day. This is a permanent denture.
Two Types of Implant Supported Dentures
When you go to see a periodontist for dental implants, you will first be examined and scanned to see if you’re a good candidate.
Due to the condition of your gums and bone, you will be advised as to which one of these two types is best for you.
You may be told you need permanent dentures or removable ones. The permanent ones cannot be removed without the help of the dentist.
The removable ones can be removed by you and put back easily. This enables you to provide better cleaning of your dentures and better care of your gums.
Dentures that are implant-retained are a little different option. This type often uses just two dentures to keep the dentures in place.
When you bite down with this type, your gums will take the force of the bite, rather than the implants.
Using only two implants to hold the dentures reduces the cost, but it may produce sores on your gums. It’s possible that mini dental implants may be used.
Just like your original teeth, once you have dental implants you need to maintain careful oral care. This involves brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing.
Without it, you could get gum disease and this could cause your implants to fail. You will also need to make regular visits to the dentist, possibly a little more often than before.
Other care may also be needed if they are permanent, such as having to clean under your teeth.
If you opt for removable implant supported dentures, then you will remove them for cleaning each day. They can easily be taken out and put back in.
Going from dentures to implants is a decision that many people make often. Implant supported dentures and implant retained dentures will both help to stabilize your dentures giving you greater freedom and less worry about slipping.
Dr. Vadivel, DDS, is a board certified periodontal surgeon, and Founder-CEO of Implants & Gumcare of Texas, offering affordable restorative and cosmetic dental procedures. Dr. Vadivel has over 25 years of experience.