Dentures provide a viable solution for many dental patients, however, their cosmetic appeal can sometimes outweigh the practical use — particularly when problems like these occur:
- Your dentures dislodge easily
- You’re limited to eating only soft foods
- You can’t stand using adhesive to keep your dentures in
- Your dentures are rubbing your gums and causing painful sores
For patients who’ve experienced these and other difficulties, Fairway Dental in Carrollton is happy to offer another solution — implant-retained dentures.
In recent years, dental implants have emerged as an excellent, long-term answer for teeth replacement. Implants replicate the natural function and appearance of missing teeth, replacing them with artificial roots (usually made of titanium), which are then inserted into the jawbone. Over the course of just a few months, the implants fuse with the bone structure in the jaw to create permanent “roots.”
With the implant-retained dentures option, dentures are attached directly onto dental implants that are fitted with special attachments to keep the dentures in place. Whereas traditional denture support relies on suction and adhesives, implant-retained dentures make use of the retention and stability of the jawbone structure, which also creates a more natural-looking appearance. The dentures can then be easily removed for cleaning of the device and gum tissue.
"I find great joy in creating the most beautiful implant-retained dentures that improve my patients appearance and quality of life," says Dr. Pérez.
In addition to enhanced stability, benefits include more effective chewing and the ability to speak more clearly. Implant-retained dentures may also decrease the appearance of wrinkling caused from other denture-adhering methods that can create an unnaturally positioned jawline.
Implant-retained dentures are usually designed for the lower jaw, since upper jaw dentures are typically more stable. However, both upper and lower dentures of this type are possible.
The implant procedure is a three-step process. In the first step, implants are placed in the jawbone under the gums — typically with two in the front of the mouth and two angled into the back of the mouth. Following this procedure, the dentist will wait several months for the implants to fuse with the bone. This process usually takes between three and four months if implants were placed in the lower jaw, and five or six months if placed in the upper jaw.
In the second step, the dentist will review an X-ray to confirm that the implants are ready. Then, a small incision is made in the gum to expose the top portion of the implants. Healing caps are placed onto the implants to ensure that the gum tissue heals correctly.
In step three, usually a couple weeks later, the healing caps are replaced with standard abutments that connect to the top of the implants. An impression is then made to create the denture framework.
If you would like to know more about implant-retained dentures, call Fairway Dental in Carrollton for a free smile consultation at 214-731-4816, or visit the website at www.fairwaydental.com.
Luis R. Pérez, DDS, PA
1616 W. Hebron Pkwy. Suite 100
Carrollton, TX 75010