Implant-supported dentures are a hybrid of dental implants and dentures. Both are popular oral restorations used to replace missing teeth. Implants are the most comprehensive way to replace missing teeth since they replace the visible part of the tooth and its root. Replacing the root is an important detail since this helps to prevent bone tissues from breaking down due to a lack of stimulation.
Dentures do not address the bone tissue loss that occurs after teeth are lost, but they are the most affordable solution. The cost of a denture set can be lower than the cost of a single implant. This makes dentures a more practical solution for many people. However, dentures are arguably the most uncomfortable missing teeth solution. These restorations move a lot in the mouth when worn, and they can even fall out while eating or speaking. This constant shifting of dentures rubs against soft tissues in the mouth like the cheeks, and it can lead to the formation of sores.
Implant-supported dentures allow you to get the best of both worlds. Instead of dentures that are held in place by suction, the dentures are attached to implants placed in the patient’s jaw. This keeps the prosthetic firmly secured in the patient’s mouth. It allows them to go about their day without having to constantly adjust their artificial teeth.
The process starts with the dentist examining the patient to determine if implant-supported dentures are the right solution for them. This often includes diagnostic tests like x-rays and a visual examination. The dentist will evaluate the patient’s jawbone density during this process. Implants are placed in the jaw, so the bone there should be thick enough to hold them. People who have worn dentures for years might have experienced bone tissue loss due to their teeth falling out. Such patients might need bone grafts to thicken their jawbone. They will also need to be fully healed before proceeding with implants. It can take up to three months to recover from bone grafts.
The dentist will also talk to the patient about their dental and health history. Certain diseases like diabetes make it harder to heal after surgery. So can problems with the immune system. Such patients need to be evaluated individually to determine if implants are right for them.
An anesthetic will be administered prior to the treatment so the patient does not feel pain during the process. An incision might be made to access the jaw and holes are drilled for each implant. Four to six implants are inserted into their corresponding holes. Any incisions are closed to conclude the first stage of treatment.
The implant will fuse with bone tissues via osseointegration over the next few months. When that is complete, the incisions will be reopened, and attachments fitted to the implant. These attachments are used to hold the patient’s implants in place, providing excellent stability.
Call or visit our Phoenix clinic to learn more about how implant-supported dentures can be used to restore your smile.
Request an appointment here: https://familydentistphoenix.com or call Phoenix Family Dentistry at (602) 547-9007 for an appointment in our Phoenix office.