Implant Retained Dentures

Replacing missing teeth with dental implant retained dentures

Usually, when you lose a tooth, it is best for your oral health to have it replaced. Missing teeth can affect your “bite” as well as your ability to speak and chew. Their loss can increase the burden on your remaining teeth and can cause muscle pain in your jaws and headaches. And of course, losing a tooth can affect your appearance. The following information reviews replacing missing teeth with an implant retained denture.

Although many patients have no problem wearing an upper denture, some people find it difficult to wear and eat with lower dentures. Several dental implant-supported replacement options are available if you are missing all of your lower teeth.

Sample Case

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What if I’m missing all of my lower teeth?

Ball Attachment Denture

One option is to have two dental implants placed in your lower jaw and a denture made that snaps onto these dental implants. This option allows your lower denture to be more stable while chewing than without dental implants. However, there will still be movement of your lower denture, and sore spots will occur if any food particles, especially seeds, are caught under it. As with all removable replacement teeth, you still will need periodic appointments for denture adjustment.

Before dental implants are placed
1. Before
Dental implants placed in mouth
2. Implants Placed
Denture attached to dental implants
3. Denture Attached

Bar Attachment Denture

Another option involves placing four to six dental implants, depending on your jaw size or shape, into your lower jaw. After healing is complete, the dental implants are connected with a custom-made support bar. Your denture will be made with special internal retention clips that attach onto the support bar, enabling the denture to snap firmly into place. This is called an “overdenture.” The advantage of this option is that it is much more stable than the first option and allows very little denture movement. Your denture is still removable for easy cleaning and maintenance.

Before dental implants are placed
1. Before
Dental implants placed in mouth
2. Implants Placed
Denture attached to dental implants
3. Denture Attached

Screw Retained Denture

A third option involves placing five or more dental implants in your jaw and attaching a permanent denture. Your denture is held in place by screws or clasps that secure it to the support posts or bar. It doesn’t touch the gum tissue, which allows you to clean under the denture without removing it. This denture will replace all your missing lower teeth and will not be removed except at maintenance visits. Although cleaning under your denture without removing it is more time consuming and requires more dexterity, many patients who want a permanent denture prefer this option.

Before dental implants are placed
1. Before
Dental implants placed in mouth
2. Implants Placed
Denture attached to dental implants
3. Denture Attached

What If I’m Missing All Of My Upper Teeth?

A similar range of treatment options is also available for your upper jaw. However, because the bone is not as hard as that in the lower jaw, people often need more dental implants to support their new replacement teeth. Depending upon the number of dental implants to be placed, it may be possible to eliminate the need for covering the roof of your mouth with a complete denture. This option allows you to fully taste your food and gives you a better sense of its temperature. Your denture will feel more natural. You will still have a removable denture, which makes cleaning the support bar and denture much easier.

Upper attached denture

Implant Retained Upper Denture

Depending upon the number of dental implants to be placed, it may be possible to eliminate the need for covering the roof of your mouth with a complete denture. This option allows you to fully taste your food and gives you a better sense of its temperature. Your denture will feel more natural. You will still have a removable denture, which makes cleaning the support bar and denture much easier.

Implant benefits

  • Improved confidence
  • Stability during eating
  • Bone and gum preservation
  • Improved dental hygiene
  • Superior esthetics
  • Nutritional benefits