Whether you’re becoming a denture patient for the first time or you’re looking for a way to stabilize loose, wobbly, uncomfortable dentures, implant dentures may be right for you. Implant dentures snap in place onto dental implants anchored in the jaw, making them more stable than conventional dentures. If you are interested in learning more about implant dentures, call our Fort Worth dental office today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Nikki Green or Dr. Robert Leedy.
The Implant Denture Difference
If you have ever worn conventional dentures, you know they have some drawbacks. Since they rely on natural suction or adhesive to stay in place, they tend to wobble and slip. Many patients report that the plastic palate on closed-palate upper dentures decreases the ability to taste food. In addition, without teeth roots to stimulate the jawbone, it naturally begins to deteriorate over time. This altering of the mouth makes dentures that once fit well, fit poorly. Also, because friction occurs between the underlining of dentures and the natural jaw ridges, the ridges wear down over the course of a few years. The result is loose, wobbly dentures that may slip out of place. Dentures often have to be relined to reduce the potential for slipping.
In contrast, implant dentures come with none of these drawbacks. Because they snap onto implants that are anchored into your jawbone, implant dentures are completely stable. All upper implant dentures are open palate, so you’ll retain the ability to taste and enjoy foods. Implant posts are surgically embedded in the jaw, so they act like teeth roots by stimulating the bone, which keeps it from deteriorating. Furthermore, no friction occurs between the gums and dentures, and relining is never necessary. In fact, with diligent care and good oral health, implants can last a lifetime.
The Implant Denture Process
The process of getting implant dentures starts with a visit to our Fort Worth, TX dental office, where you will consult with Dr. Green or Dr. Leedy. The doctor will discuss your full medical and dental history, and you will need to provide a list of all medications you take. The doctor will do a full dental exam, paying special attention to the health of your gums and the density of your jawbone. Jawbone density is one of the most important factors in deciding if you are a good candidate for implant dentures. If there is not enough bone for proper osseointegration to occur, the doctor may suggest that you have a bone graft to improve your bone density before implant surgery.
Once you have been accepted as a candidate for the surgery, the doctor will take x-rays of your mouth, perform any necessary extractions, and discuss your anesthesia options. Then, on the day of your surgery, our caring staff will make you comfortable and start administering anesthesia or sedation.
The doctor will secure tiny implant posts made of titanium into your jaw in predetermined locations that are most ideal for osseointegration. Typically, it takes 4-6 posts to comfortably hold the weight of a denture. The implants will remain under your gums for the next 3-6 months while the healing process begins and the bone fuses to the implants (osseointegration), anchoring them in place. The doctor will give you temporary dentures to wear during the healing process, so you will be able to eat, talk, and smile normally. While you are healing, the doctor will use impressions of your mouth to design your permanent dentures.
You will return to our office for the second phase, after your jaw has healed and implants are secure. The doctor will expose the implants and attach small connectors, called abutments, to the head of each implant. Your new dentures will snap onto the abutments, and you will leave your appointment with a brand new, permanent, beautiful smile.
Caring for Implant Dentures
Your dentures will need to be cleaned regularly, just like natural teeth. Brush them twice a day, and brush your cheeks and gums to protect against gum disease and promote good oral health. The doctors recommend that you take your dentures out at night and clean them with an ADA-approved denture cleaner. Also plan to schedule regular, six-month dental checkups, so that we can monitor your implants and make sure your mouth remains healthy.
Call for a Consultation Today
If you are ready for dentures that won’t slip, wobble, or feel uncomfortable, call our Fort Worth dental office at (817) 737-6601 today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Nikki Green or Dr. Robert Leedy. They are ready to start you on the road to a stunning smile.