Dan's Dentistry Blog

« Back to Home

Dentures Meet Dental Implants: The Best of Both Worlds

Posted on

When it comes to replacing all your teeth, dentures might seem like the default option. There are downsides to dentures, largely related to the fact that they sit atop your gums and palate, meaning they can slip out of position. Your gums and palate will progressively (although subtly) change shape, which is a natural part of ageing, and dentures will need to be occasionally relined to ensure a continuing good fit. In the absence of tooth roots, your jawbone will lose some of its density too, as this is maintained via pressure stimulation from teeth. Denture implants are an effective alternative option, creating a hybrid between dentures and the stability of dental implants.

How Dental Implants Work

You may have heard of single tooth dental implants. The implant is in fact a small titanium alloy screw, inserted into your jaw. The bone heals around the implant, with a prosthetic dental crown (a fake tooth) then attached to it. Denture implants follow the same basic principle.

Multiple Implants for a Single Prosthesis

Your dentist will insert a number of dental implants into your jaw. When the implants have healed in place, your new dentures are simply attached to these implants. Your dentures are unable to move out of place (or unlikely to, which will be covered shortly). In addition to their primary use (replacing your missing teeth with a functional, natural-looking prosthetic), denture implants also help to maintain the density of your jawbone, which is beneficial for your overall, long-term oral health.

Fixed or Removable

Although there's likely to be a specific recommendation about the best denture implants in your particular case, it essentially boils down to two choices—fixed or removable. A removable prosthesis can be disconnected from its supporting implants for cleaning (and must be removed overnight). A fixed prosthesis can only be removed by a dentist and is cleaned and maintained as you would natural teeth. Both options are secure, although there's the small possibility that a removable prosthesis could disconnect in certain situations, such as eating something especially chewy. For this reason, you might prefer the added security of having your dentures fixed to your implants.

Needing to have all your teeth replaced isn't the best situation for anyone, and removable dentures were once about the only solution. While dentures still have a valid use, it's better to employ them as part of a hybrid solution, keeping them securely in place with denture implants.

For more information on denture implants, contact a professional near you.