IMPLANT RETAINED DENTURES
Dentures have been a phenomenal resource for patients suffering from tooth loss, but when we hear the term “denture,” a positive connotation doesn’t necessarily spring to mind.
But worse, what happens when your natural teeth are missing?
The traditional dentures of yesteryear are suddenly rendered useless without a support system to latch onto, you are left with an embarrassing bite and an inability to live like you’re accustomed.
With the specialization of implant-retained dentures or sometimes referred to Snap On Dentures, dental patients around the world are eating better, speaking better, and living better.
At Eastport Dental, Dr. Huynh and his practiced team specialize in implant-based prosthetics - or as they’re more colloquially known, snap-on dentures.
Implant-retained dentures are affixed to dental implants to provide the support and reinforcement usually provided by your natural existing teeth.
While traditional dentures simply lay atop the gum line, they still fall dependent upon existing teeth to anchor them into place. When there are no teeth at all, however, something must be placed within the gum tissue to hold your denture in place.
Implant-retained dentures are available for both the upper and lower jaw.
Anywhere from 2-6 implants may be used in the form of titanium screws, drilled into the jaw where over time they can fuse into the jaw bone, becoming a natural part of the mouth.
The average healing time is anywhere from 3-6 months, and temporary crowns are usually used during this time to allow normal day-to-day activities. Once the implants have properly healed, a second visit will be scheduled in order for you to receive your permanent new denture.
This is a much more intensive alternative to traditional dentures, as it uses the existing bone within your jaw to insert custom attachments that will fasten to your denture with an easy snap. There are, of course, pros and cons to both traditional and implant-retained dentures.
Implants clearly require more in-depth work, but they provide a better fit than traditional gums which can rub against the gum line, causing moderate to severe irritation. Traditional dentures can also hasten bone loss, too, while implants instead create renewed growth.
Implants actually stimulate and encourage growth, providing support to the jaw bone, while traditional dentures instead allow the bone to wither and cease growth.
The healing period with traditional dentures is hindered by a series of natural and external factors. With no growth, the jawbone inevitably shrinks, and the denture begins to require several adjustments spread over several visits.
With traditional dentures, patients also frequently report issues with eating, drinking, and even swimming, leading to the development of social anxiety and avoidance. The embarrassment of slipping dentures can be far too much to handle, leading individuals to actively avoid social situations.
And even worse, traditional dentures can significantly alter the shape of your mouth over time and permanently change your smile.
Therefore, most patients opt for implant-retained dentures to save on so much time and expense in the long run.
There are two popular types of implant-retained dentures:
- Bar-retained dentures - These use a thin bar made of metal runs along the jawline, attaching to the various implants. Your denture simply slides over the bar and fits snugly into place.
- Ball-retained dentures - Instead of a full metal bar, these dentures simply snap onto attachments placed onto the implant themselves. The ball-shaped attachments are often referred to as the male attachments, fitting securely into denture sockets known as female attachments (or vice versa).
Implant-retained dentures require only a minimally invasive procedure and are exceptionally durable, lasting for many years.
Although they may come at additional time and expense, implant-retained dentures are undoubtedly the best choice.
With your new denture comes renewed, solid support in both your jaw and bite.
Foods you were previously unable to eat are now a reality.
There is also far less maintenance required on a daily basis and require less frequent care and refreshing. Unlike crowns or bridgework, these dentures simply need to be removed from the mouth prior to sleep to prevent the accumulation of plaque and bacteria during your sleep. It is part of a simple daily maintenance plan that will ensure that the life and longevity of your custom denture.
During your appointments, Dr. Huynh and his team will take care to demonstrate proper use and care of your new implant-retained dentures to ensure that you are comfortable.
Cost largely depends on the exact procedure needed. Each patient’s case is different, so we custom-tailor pricing to your exact needs. We do not charge the same price for severe cases as we do minimal ones. The number of implants will vary, impacting the total cost.
Our patient support team will work with you to ensure that you find a financial plan and payment schedule that works best for you and your family.
Schedule a consultation with us today to discuss your options for implant-retained dentures!
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