Things to Know About Implant-Supported Dentures

by Rana Baroudi

Dentistry has made leaps and bounds over the years, and one of the more notable advancements is the advent of implant-supported dentures. This modern solution caters to those who need dentures but want a more stable, natural-feeling alternative to traditional dentures. Before diving in, let’s acquaint ourselves with the concept and the benefits it offers.

What are Implant-Supported Dentures?

Implant-supported dentures, often known as overdentures, are a type of overdenture that is supported by and attached to dental implants. Unlike conventional dentures, which rest on the gums, these dentures are anchored to implants that have been surgically placed into the jawbone. This design offers unparalleled stability, especially for a lower denture.

Benefits of Implant-Supported Dentures:

  1. Stability and Security: One of the most significant advantages is the stability they provide. Traditional dentures can slip or move, but implant-supported dentures are anchored firmly, allowing users to eat, speak, and laugh without hesitation.
  2. Natural Look and Feel: These dentures feel more natural in the mouth compared to their traditional counterparts. The tight fit and secure connection give wearers a sense of having natural teeth again.
  3. Preservation of Jawbone: One of the challenges with traditional dentures is the potential for bone loss in the jaw over time. Implant-supported dentures help stimulate the bone, reducing the rate of bone resorption.
  4. Increased Comfort: Because they are securely attached, the chances of sores and discomfort resulting from a moving denture are reduced.
  5. Enhanced Chewing Functionality: With improved stability, wearers can enjoy a broader range of foods and bite with more force than with traditional dentures.
  6. Boosted Self-confidence: With the look and feel of natural teeth and the knowledge that there will be no embarrassing slips, many users report a boost in self-confidence.

Are You A Candidate?

While the vast majority of adults can benefit from implant-supported dentures, there are certain prerequisites and considerations that come into play when it comes to determining if a patient is a candidate.

Foremost, the structural integrity of the jawbone is paramount. For the implants to anchor securely, an individual must possess a sufficient amount of jawbone. This is because the titanium posts, which act as roots for the new teeth, need a solid foundation to ensure stability and durability. If the jawbone has receded or deteriorated due to conditions like periodontal disease or long-term tooth loss, it might initially seem like a roadblock. However, modern dentistry has a solution for this as well: bone grafting. This procedure involves augmenting the jawbone to restore its volume, making it suitable for implants.

Beyond the physical state of the jawbone, broader aspects of a person’s overall health play a role. Chronic illnesses, for instance, may affect healing post-surgery. Lifestyle choices, particularly habits like smoking, can hinder the osseointegration process, where the implant fuses with the bone. Furthermore, a patient’s oral hygiene practices are crucial. Good oral care ensures the longevity of the implants and maintains the overall health of the mouth.

It’s also worth noting that the journey towards implant-supported dentures requires a commitment. Post-surgical care, regular check-ups, and a keen attention to dental hygiene are all part of ensuring the success and longevity of the implants.

Given these various considerations, it’s paramount to undergo a comprehensive consultation with a dental professional. They can provide a holistic evaluation, considering all the above factors and more. A detailed conversation, coupled with examinations and possibly X-rays, will paint a clear picture—guiding both the patient and dentist towards the best solution tailored specifically for the individual’s needs.

The Procedure

The journey of obtaining implant-supported dentures is a thorough and meticulous process that is spread out over several months, ensuring the best possible outcome for the patient. This multi-step approach guarantees that each patient receives individualized care and ends up with dentures that not only look natural but also function optimally.

Below is a deeper look into these steps. This deep dive will help you to better understand the intricacies involved:

  1. Initial Consultation: Every journey begins with a single step, and in the world of implant-supported dentures, it commences with an in-depth consultation. During this crucial phase, a dental professional will conduct a comprehensive examination of your oral health. This will involve taking dental X-rays, understanding your medical history, and gauging the health of your gums and jawbone. The purpose of this stage is to determine if you’re an ideal candidate for the procedure, identify any potential challenges, and tailor a plan that suits your unique needs.
  2. Implant Placement: With the roadmap established, the next step is the surgical procedure to place the titanium posts into the jawbone. Titanium is chosen for its biocompatibility, ensuring that it does not adversely react with body tissues. These posts, once embedded, serve as the robust foundation for your dentures. Each post is strategically placed to guarantee maximum support and even distribution of pressure when the dentures are used.
  3. Osseointegration: Following the implant placement, the body’s natural healing process kicks into gear. Osseointegration is the phase where the titanium implants form an intimate bond with the surrounding bone. This fusion is pivotal, as it ensures the stability and longevity of the denture. Typically, this process can take a few months, but it’s essential for ensuring the implants have a durable anchor in the jaw.
  4. Denture Fabrication: With the implants firmly in place, the next phase revolves around crafting the actual dentures. Impressions or molds of the mouth are meticulously taken to ensure an exact fit. This step is critical as a perfect fit ensures comfort, functionality, and a natural appearance. The dentures are then fabricated using high-quality materials that mimic the look and feel of natural teeth.
  5. Attachment: The final step in this transformative journey is the attachment phase. Once the custom-made dentures are ready and have passed all quality checks, they are securely and precisely attached to the now-integrated implants. This attachment ensures that the dentures remain stable during eating and speaking, providing the patient with confidence in their new smile.

The process of getting implant-supported dentures is a blend of advanced dental technology, skilled craftsmanship, and individualized patient care. Every stage is essential, ensuring that the final outcome is not just aesthetically pleasing but also stands the test of time in terms of functionality.

Maintenance

While implant-supported dentures offer many advantages, they also require care and attention. Regular cleaning is crucial to maintain oral health and ensure the longevity of the implants and the denture. Also, periodic check-ups with the dentist are essential to ensure everything remains in optimal condition.

Dr. Rana Baroudi: Your Implant-Supported Dentures Expert in San Jose

If you’re considering implant-supported dentures, it’s essential to consult an expert who can guide you through the process. Dr. Rana Baroudi, a renowned periodontist in San Jose, comes with a wealth of experience in dental implants and related procedures. Not only can she offer detailed insights into whether this solution is right for you, but her commitment to patient care ensures that your journey towards a new smile is comfortable, informed, and successful. With a track record of satisfied patients and a holistic approach to dentistry, Dr. Baroudi is a name you can trust when considering implant-supported dentures.

Conclusion

Implant-supported dentures represent a significant advancement in restorative dentistry. Offering both aesthetic and functional benefits, they can transform the lives of those who choose this option. If you are contemplating making the shift from traditional to implant-supported dentures, it’s imperative to seek guidance from professionals who are well-versed in the field.