Implant supported dentures are prosthetic replacement teeth that are secured in place by dental implants attached to the jaw. They can be used on either the upper or lower jawbone. These custom-made dentures provide a more natural bite and smile compared to traditional removable dentures.
Implant supported denture basics
Implant supported dentures are designed to take the full force of chewing. They maintain bone density and keep the jawbone from deteriorating. They contribute to jawbone health and function because they act like natural teeth to exert the same amount of force against the bone.
The process of getting implant supported dentures typically takes place over five to seven months. During the first appointment, the dentist will insert titanium screw implants into the jawbone. The implants then need several months to fuse to the bone. Once fused, the titanium screws become incredibly strong anchors. During a second appointment, attachments are secured onto the screw implants. After the gums have had time to heal, the dentist will connect the custom-made dentures to the implanted hardware.
Missing teeth can negatively affect the entire mouth from appearance to functionality. When lost teeth are not replaced, the jaw begins to decay and the cheeks collapse inward, making patients appear older. Implant supported dentures provide many advantages when compared to traditional dentures.
- Comfort: Implant supported dentures are more comfortable because they are custom made for each patient's mouth. They also stay in their correct position thanks to the jaw implants.
- Appearance: They are made to look like natural teeth and give patients a confident smile. Wearers do not have to worry about their dentures slipping out of place.
- Speech: Because implant supported dentures become fully integrated with the jaw, they allow patients to speak clearly and without slurring. They do, however, sometimes cause clicking noises in the same way traditional dentures do.
- Eating: Implant supported dentures have a much stronger bite force compared to removable dentures. This makes it easier to eat tough and chewy foods. They also improve the sensation and taste of food because they do not cover the roof of the mouth.
- Bone density: Implants in the jawbone act as supports for the bone and improve bone density.
- Maintenance cost: Implant supported dentures do not require the purchase and use of adhesives. There are fewer repairs needed because they help maintain the bones.
- Durability: These dentures have a life expectancy of over 20 years.
Caring for implant supported dentures
Like natural teeth, dentures supported by implants need to be brushed and flossed twice a day to prevent gum disease and bad breath. Patients also require dental visits every six months so the dentist can evaluate the jawbone, the fit of the dentures and gum health.
Implant supported dentures are more stable than regular dentures, making it easier to eat a wide variety of foods. However, patients should avoid very sticky and extremely hard foods to prevent damage.
Implant supported dentures shine with a number of important advantages when compared to other types of dentures. They provide patients with a beautiful natural smile and contribute to improved oral health.
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