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How Implant Supported Dentures Help Prevent Bone Loss
While traditional dentures can be used to help replace lost permanent teeth, implant supported dentures may be a more appropriate long-term solution for many dental patients. Standard dentures can eventually lead to gradual bone loss in the jaw. However, dentures that are supported by dental implants can help prevent this bone loss, as well as provide other benefits for the individual. An understanding of the advantages of implant supported dentures and the procedures used to install them can help an individual seeking tooth replacement make a well-informed decision.
The benefits of dentures secured to implants
When implants are installed in the upper and/or lower jawbones, the small devices can be used to hold dentures in place during everyday wear. This option has many benefits for the wearer, both immediately and over time.
Traditional dentures are supported and secured in place at the gum line. Movements of the mouth, from chewing to speaking to swallowing, can cause the dentures to rub against the gums, sometimes causing soreness and irritation. On the other hand, implant supported dentures are attached securely and distribute pressure evenly along the implant devices, avoiding discomfort from everyday movements. The implants also function like tooth roots, providing stimulation to the jawbone that helps it maintain density.
Individuals who wear traditional dentures are often required to limit their diets to prevent the devices from being damaged or slipping loose. However, dentures secured in place using implants are more stable in the mouth. Dental patients are able to enjoy a wider variety of healthy foods without having to worry about a crunchy fruit or vegetable threatening the security of their dentures.
Because implant supported dentures stay more securely in place, many dental patients who use these types of devices may enjoy an increase in self-confidence with a beautiful smile. These dentures are not prone to slipping loose or falling out, so they are less likely to negatively impact speech patterns. Patients can experience a more natural-looking smile with fewer limitations while dining in public.
The process of installing implant supported dentures
Surgery is required to install implants in the jawbone to support dentures. The types of implants used and number of surgeries required depends on the current state of the bones in the patient's mouth and jaw. Typically, implant devices are installed towards the front of mouth, where the bones tend to be denser and fewer nerves and other obstructions are present.
After the metal implants are installed, the patient will need to allow the tissues to completely heal while the components naturally fuse to existing bone. Once the recovery process is complete, the specially designed dentures are attached to the implants. They should still be removed and cleaned every night before bed.
Dental patients with significant tooth loss may wish to consider implant supported dentures to restore a functional smile. This option can help prevent future bone loss and promote a healthy and more confident lifestyle. A dentist can help patients determine the options available as well as an anticipated timeline for the entire procedure.
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