Millions of people around the world are missing all their teeth in their upper or lower jaw. Many of them struggle to keep their dentures secure, particularly in the lower jaw. If you are one of them, you already know about the embarrassment of slipping dentures, not being able to eat all the foods that you love and the ineffectiveness of denture adhesives. Fortunately, there is now a way to make your denture work the way it was intended: stabilization with dental implants.
Too many people who have conventional dentures don’t wear them for the simple fact that they don’t stay in place. The use of dental implants to stabilize dentures has proven to be successful for hundreds of thousands of people. The number is growing daily as word spreads of the effectiveness and long-term integrity of the treatment. In fact, dental implants have the highest success rate of any implanted surgical device.
Conventional treatment options for tooth replacement, Crown & Bridge and full or partial dentures, address the short-term cosmetic problem of the missiing teeth, but do nothing to stop the bone loss. Crown & Bridge also requires that two or more healthy teeth be ground down to serve as abutments (anchors) for a bridge, leaving them at a much greater risk for cavities and endodontic failure. If the original abutment teeth fail, more healthy teeth must be sacrificed to serve as anchors, while you continue to lose bone beneath the bridge.
However, with implants, the healthy teeth are left alone. Plus, dental implants, like natural teeth, transmit chewing forces to the jaw, stimulating it and halting the bone loss. This is why many leading dental organizations now recognise dental implants as the standard of care for tooth replacement.
In the procedure titanium screws (implants) with integrated ball-tops are inserted into the jaw, where they will fuse into the bone. The procedure typically takes about an hour, and can be done under local anesthesia. Your existing denture is modified to sit comfortably over the implants during the healing phase.
Discomfort from the procedure is usually minor. Your dentist can prescribe medication to alleviate pain and will suggest a modified diet during the initial healing phase.
After the implants have healed, your denture is modified to snap onto the ball-tops. The denture will be secure until you remove it for clesning. Simply apply upward pressure to the front of the denture with your thumbs to unseat the denture.
Daily cleaning consists of removing your denture at night and brushing around your implants to remove any food and plaque. Following your doctor’s post-operative instructions and maintaining your dental hygiene are important factors in ensuring the long term success of your treatment.