Patients who wear dentures, either removable ones or ones that are adhered to the mouth, know that life with dentures is not always easy. They can fall out, need to be adjusted from time to time as they tend to become uncomfortable when the shape of the mouth changes, can cause denture sores and be unclean, and cannot stop the loss of remaining teeth. There is a way to get around all of these problems, with a dental implant supported denture.
What is a dental implant supported denture?
Imagine a traditional denture, with crowns, an internal structure, and some artificial gum material as well, added for aesthetic reasons. These can be fitted to go on top of the abutment of dental implants, which are placed where the missing teeth are. These dentures can connect to the dental implants in two ways: either via a click bar, or via ball abutments. A click bar is a special kind of bar that the dentures can attach to, and are completely stabilised. A ball attachment is when the dental implants attach directly to the dental implants, and require an abutment on the dental implant and one on the denture as well. Both provide greater stability, and make it so that the dentures can only be removed if you want them to be removed, by exerting considerable force.
As with all medical procedures, getting dental implant supported dentures is not for everyone unequivocally. These kinds of dentures require dental implants, which are tiny titanium screws that are drilled into the jawbone. They require enough bone density and healthy bone materials, relatively healthy gums and the ability to stop bleeding. The mouth also needs to be more or less clean, as there is a surgical element to deal with, and the wound created can become infected by the bacteria that live in the mouth. Patients with systemic diseases that make dental implantation impossible, like diabetes, haemophilia, AIDS and osteoporosis cannot get these dentures, as they require dental implants.
If you are wearing dentures and are frustrated by them, perhaps it is time to ask your dentist if your dentures can be stabilised using dental implants. Please be aware that this will require several surgeries and may be quite costly. Make sure you consult with your dentist beforehand and get all the information you need to make an educated choice about this complex procedure.