Millions of United States citizens are missing a fair amount of their natural teeth. If a single tooth is missing here and there, the patient can likely get away with replacing a single tooth. However, what happens when several teeth are missing? Needless to say, things can get expensive rather quickly.
This is precisely why dentures are so popular. These prosthetics are a terrific and affordable option for replacing missing teeth and giving patients a beautiful smile for years to come. However, some people find that dentures are not as secure as they need to be. Whether they slip and slide or simply fall out at inopportune moments, nobody wants to deal with dysfunctional dentures. Fortunately, dentists have figured out a way to stabilize them using dental implants. These implants enable patients to take full advantage of their dentures without having to deal with the slew of problems that result from destabilization. If you are having problems with your dentures and want to learn more about denture stabilization, read on.
The Gist Of Denture Stabilization
Let’s face it, prosthesis isn’t always a sure thing. And when it doesn’t fit just right, every movement can be painful. Needless to say, this can have a drastic impact on everyday life: in addition to making it difficult to chew, destabilized dentures can cause swelling, friction wounds, and general discomfort. They can even have adverse impacts on speech, which can make conversations or public speaking an absolute nightmare.
So What’s The Deal With Implants?
In order to achieve stabilization, the implants must be properly placed. First, the dentist will surgically implant a metal post, which will sit in the gums for a few weeks. Afterwards, the post will eventually fuse with the jawbone and form a tight hold.
Can You Stabilize Dentures You Already Own?
One of the best aspects of denture stabilization is that you are able to retrofit your current dentures. All your dentist has to do is modify the underside by adding additional attachments. These new additions will remain out of sight and will bond with the metal posts to maintain stability.
Am I A Candidate?
The best way to find out if you are a candidate for denture stabilization is to discuss the procedure with your dentist. In order to qualify for the procedure, your jawbone must be able to support the metal post, otherwise it will not fuse properly. However, dentists have been able to make slight adjustments to accommodate candidates with deteriorating jawbones. This is sometimes accomplished by using a slightly different implant in lieu of a metal post. For example, sometimes the dentist will elect to use a clip that affixes over the gum line. If the deterioration is especially severe, the dentist may perform a bone graft to help make the problematic area sturdier.
How The Procedure Works
Proper placement requires healthy gums and a sturdy jawbone. The dentist will begin the procedure once they verify that the patient’s jaw and gums are indeed healthy enough to support implants. Once the implants are surgically placed into the jawbone through a small incision, it takes anywhere between 3 to 6 months for osseointegration to occur.
After the gums have healed, the dentist will attach a bar, snap, or abutment to the implant. To do so, they will need to reopen the tissue and attach the hardware directly to the implant. From there, it takes about 2 weeks to heal.
Finally, the custom dentures are ready to be secured to the aforementioned hardware. While you are undergoing the process described above, the lab will be fabricating your dentures, ensuring they adhere perfectly to your impressions.
Do Not Ignore Your Missing Teeth
Unfortunately, temporal and financial constraints force some people to ignore their missing teeth. While this may seem tenable in the moment, it can actually lead to much more expensive problems down the line. Specific issues caused by missing teeth include degenerating facial structures, significant problems when speaking or eating, a much older and aged appearance, and low self-esteem.
If you want to learn more about denture stabilization, schedule an appointment with Rancho San Diego Dental & North County Dental Group today. Their comprehensive approach to dentistry has helped countless patients achieve the smile of their dreams.