Implant Retained Dentures

Replacing missing teeth with implant retained dentures

Implant retained dentures offer a great advantage to denture patients in that they provide for a more comfortable and stable fit and allow patients to achieve a more natural biting and chewing capacity.  Soreness and gum irritation from “pressure spots” under a denture are much less of a problem due to implant attachments under the denture base offering retention and support.  Dental implants that have integrated with the jawbone also help to maintain bone health under the denture where bone resorption is frequently a problem with a conventional denture.  Implant retained dentures help provide patients with increased confidence when chewing, speaking, and smiling and can dramatically improve their quality of life.

Although many patients have no problem wearing an upper denture, some find it difficult to wear and eat with lower dentures due to instability created by movement from the tongue and floor of the mouth.  Several implant-supported replacement options are available when all lower teeth are missing.  These involve placement of two, four or more implants and will definitely add stability and retention to the denture.

Whenall lower teeth are missing

Ball or Locator Attachment Denture

One option is to have two implants placed in your lower jaw and a denture made that snaps onto these implants by way of an internal attachment. This option allows your lower denture to be more stable while chewing and provides a greater feeling of security and self confidence with speech. Additional implants can also be used when adequate bone is available for even more retention. Your denture is still removable for ease of cleaning and maintenance.

A mouth with the lower jaw missing all of its teeth
1. Before
A mouth with the lower jaw with two implants and no bottom teeth
2. Implants Placed
A mouth with a Ball Attachment Denture latched onto the lower jaw by two implants
3. Denture Attached

Bar Attachment Over Denture

Another option involves placing four to six implants, depending on your jaw size or shape, into your lower jaw. After healing is complete, the 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.

A mouth that has all teeth missing on its lower jaw
1. Before
A mouth without teeth and four implants connected by a metal bar on its lower jaw
2. Implants Placed
A mouth with a Bar Attachment Denture secured onto the lower jaw by four implants
3. Denture Attached

Screw Retained Denture

A third option involves placing five or more 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.

A mouth that has all lower jaw teeth missing
1. Before
A mouth that has six implants and no teeth on its lower jaw
2. Implants Placed
A mouth with a Screw Attachment Denture affixed onto the lower jaw by six implants
3. Denture Attached

When all upper teeth are missing

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 implants to support their new replacement teeth. Depending upon the number of 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.

An Implant Retained Upper Denture with its implants attached

Implant Retained Upper Denture

Depending upon the number of 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.

Considerations

Again, implant retained dentures offer great advantages and many benefits to patients.  Patients enjoy more stability during eating, improved nutrition, and greater confidence when speaking and smiling along with the benefit of bone preservation under the denture.

Please call our office at 423-929-7146 or contact us online if you have questions or concerns regarding implant retained dentures.