Dentures can be uncomfortable, irritating and embarrassing. Many people struggle to chew comfortably and even say that their self-confidence has been undermined by wearing a denture. With advances in implant dentistry, we now have many innovative techniques for denture stabilisation.
From the cost-effective use of mini-implants to stabilise an existing denture, to the complete replacement of a denture anchored with fixed implants, dental implants can transform your comfort, self-esteem and self-confidence.
The implants are titanium screws placed into the jaw, to replace original roots. Depending on the treatment, you may need between 4 and 8 implants to secure each denture in place. It’s a straightforward process which can be completed under local anesthetic. The implants will need three to six months to heal and bond with your jaw bone to provide a solid support for your replacement tooth.
Temporary replacement teeth are usually fitted at the same time as your implant placement, which will stay in place until the final restoration appointment.
At Portman Dental & Implant Clinic we can offer a advanced implant system for securing dentures, which will enable the replacement dentures to be loaded on the same day as the implant placement. Find out more about Same day smile here.
Once your jaw has healed, an abutment will be fixed to the implant to hold your denture in place. Abutments are produced in titanium, gold or porcelain, and can come as a standard fit or crafted specifically for you. These options offer a range of aesthetics results, depending on your requirements.
Your Portman Dental & Implant Clinic dentist will then fit dentures on top, to replace your missing teeth. They will carefully match the colour of your crown to your natural teeth.
Using an implant supported denture to replace multiple teeth has the advantages of:
Chewing function is improved - the denture is much more stable - reduced risk of digestive problems
No more concerns about embarrassing situations when a conventional denture may drop - improved self confidence
Better support for facial tissues - giving a more 'youthful' appearance
No need for unpleasant denture adhesives or pastes
The denture can be removed to ease cleaning around the implants
A natural smile and a healthy mouth are important for your confidence, but it is important to replace missing teeth for health reasons as well.
Some of the health reasons to replace missing teeth are:
If you have missing teeth, the way your jaw opens and closes can be affected. This can result in a condition called TMJ dysfunction (or TMD), which is extremely painful and requires surgery in extreme cases.
Gaps between the teeth can allow the movement of other teeth into these spaces. These surrounding teeth become increasingly susceptible to decay and gum disease, which can result in them being lost as well.
Once teeth have gone, it results in bone loss. This not only shortens your face and ages it, but can cause other teeth to become loose which are then at risk of falling out. Your features droop and can appear prematurely aged.
What is a dental implant?
When a tooth falls out, the root which normally holds it in place is lost as well. This means there is then nothing to hold a replacement tooth in place. A dental implant solves this problem by using a titanium fixture to replicate the function of the tooth’s natural root.
The implant is placed into the jaw where it fuses with the bone. Like your natural root, it then provides a foundation. This provides a secure point onto which a crown can be placed, replacing the missing tooth.
How long do dental implants last?
Dental implants have been used for over 30 years to replace missing teeth. As with natural teeth, they can be damaged by trauma and affected by gum disease and poor oral hygiene. However, if they are looked after like normal teeth, they can last a lifetime.
Is a dental implant right for me?
Most healthy people, who regularly brush their teeth and visit the dentist, are suitable for implants. Dental implants can be a great solution for people of any age.
While implants are suitable for most people, there are circumstances where implants may not be suitable. It’s important that you speak to your Portman dentist if you’re concerned about any of the below.
Heavy smoking, which slows down and hinders the healing process.
Excessive alcohol intake, which can disrupt healing of the gums.
Those with a weak bones, as the implant needs to fuse with the bone in the jaw.
Severe gum disease. Tooth decay and/or gum disease needs to be treated before proceeding with a dental implant. Gum disease is a major cause of bone loss, which would hinder the success of any implant procedure.
People with compromised immune systems.
People who suffer from teeth grinding (bruxism).
What is Immediate Loading?
Immediate Loading is when a dental implant and crown are fitted at the same time. This is as opposed to a Delayed Loading implant, which is a two-stage process, separated by a period of up to six months.
The main advantage of Immediate Loading is convenience. The procedure can be done in the same day, which is why it’s sometimes known as ‘the same day smile’.
Other advantages are that it’s a quicker procedure, there’s no need to wait for the bone and implant to fuse, and you don’t need to wear a temporary bridge or dentures.
However, the main disadvantage with Immediate Loading is that there’s an increased risk of loss of the implant, due to a failure of the bone to fuse sufficiently to the implant.
Your Portman dentist will advise you on which technique will be the most beneficial for you.
What is Delayed Loading?
Delayed Loading is a two-stage process in which the implant is inserted, followed by a period of healing before the replacement teeth are fitted.
The benefits of this procedure are that there is less risk of implant failure, fewer implants are required, and the fusion between implant and jaw will have taken place, providing a firm base for your replacement teeth.
The main disadvantage to this procedure is the time you have to wait while the bone fuses. Speak to your Portman dentist about which procedure is the best for you.