While most people understand that oral health is very important in helping to maintain and safeguard their teeth through a lifetime, some people are not so lucky. They are unfortunate to lose all their teeth due to a physical condition and this can place them at a significant disadvantage. People in this situation may believe that their only option is to have a complete set of traditional dentures, but there may be a better alternative. What should they consider instead?
Dentures Are Not the Only Game in Town
For generations, a full set of dentures was the only choice for those who lost all of their teeth through decay, or otherwise. These could certainly restore functionality and allow the patient to eat and talk as they used to before. However, there was a certain disadvantage associated with a full denture, which was that the bone underneath would gradually wear away.
What Bone Loss Means
The bone structure found in the mouth is rather different to that found in the rest of the body. It's softer and more malleable to a certain extent and is designed to support the teeth as they grow and move. When a tooth is removed, the bone will go through a process known as "resorption." This means that it will shrink back to a certain extent over time. Patients who are fitted with dentures find that this can cause issues, as those dentures won't fit as well as they initially did.
Overdentures As an Alternative
As an alternative to this approach, you may like to consider getting an overdenture. This will call for two or more implants to be inserted into the bone at strategic locations. These will be anchored using titanium posts and will form the basis to secure a "bridge" of dentures.
This technique provides for a great deal of stability and retention. The dentures do not move, like the traditional version and it's also a lot more comfortable for the wearer. There's also another advantage. When implants are located in this way the resorption, or the bone loss is arrested significantly, versus the alternative. This will help to retain the overall structure of the face as well.
A Better Approach
So, if you've been considering a full set of dentures, have a word with your specialist to see if you could benefit from having a two implant overdenture instead. This might provide you with a better alternative all-round, with less readjustment required over time.Share
10 March 2017
I have worked as a school nurse for decades. Children come to me with all sorts of scrapes and bumps and bruises. Black eyes from playing football, sprained wrists from falling off the monkey bars and stomachaches from too many sweets are common complaints. However, the issue that seems to cause the greatest angst is tooth problems. Sometimes a child will have a second tooth knocked out when playing sport and parents arrive in tears. At other times, children come to my office crying because their friends are teasing them about teeth that are discoloured or stick out. I take an active interest in the latest dental news so that I can give parents and children comfort and advice. I have included some of my collected wisdom on these pages. Perhaps this information can help you understand some options when faced with a dental problem. Thank you for reading.