It is common for people as they age or after suffering from an accident, to require the use of a tooth replacement solution. In many cases, patients turn to dentures to replace missing or damaged teeth. Dentures are an affordable option which are often used to replace missing teeth and help the patient gain confidence with their smile. Unfortunately, many patients find dentures to be uncomfortable, bulky and cause issues with slipping and dietary restrictions. As a result of some of the common limitations associated with dentures, denture stabilization has a popular method for better securing dentures in place. Denture stabilization gives patients the ability to take advantage of affordable dentures and eliminates some of the biggest disadvantages. Throughout the U.S. there are millions of patients who are missing many of their own natural teeth. Individual dental implants are the optimal method for replacing missing teeth. However, this solution can be incredibly expensive for patients who require the replacement of multiple teeth. The affordability is what makes dentures such an attractive tooth replacement solution. They allow patients the ability to replace their missing teeth for an affordable price. In many cases, a patient can purchase a complete set of dentures for less than the cost of a few implants.
The main issues which patients have with wearing dentures often include the requirement to remove the prosthetic daily for cleaning, dietary restrictions which can impact social outings, and the constant challenge of the prosthetic device slipping and falling out of place. The dental adhesives which are used to secure the dentures to the gums can also be problematic and frustrating for patients. In many cases, the adhesives have a strange taste or may contain strange ingredients.
Fortunately, denture stabilization offers patients with missing teeth an improved alternative to avoid many of the challenges associated with traditional dentures, and is still more affordable than individual implants.
Because of the many limitations and discomfort associated with dentures, many patients refuse to wear them as a tooth replacement option. Fortunately, modern dentistry has introduced denture stabilization. Denture stabilization involves the use of implants to keep the dentures securely in place. Denture stabilization works by using surgically placed dental implants to firmly attach the dentures to the jawbone. While single tooth implants are most common, when a patient is missing most of their teeth, dentures are a great solution. As previously discussed, dentures can be bulky, uncomfortable, and slip while chewing and speaking. This can create issues for the denture wearer and place limitations on the patient’s diet and social life. Most denture adhesives also have a foul taste, which is quite unpleasant and can impact the flavor of foods and beverages throughout the day.
Denture stabilization or implant-supported dentures are quickly gaining popularity. In addition to resolving many of the challenges associated with dentures, because the implants are attached directly to the jawbone, they aid in preventing bone loss or changes in the facial structure. Compared to traditional removable dentures, implant overdentures are a more permanent and secure solution. Once the implants are placed and the dentures are securely attached, the device cannot be removed without a dentist.
Patients are able to eliminate the tedious cleaning routine associated with traditional dentures. The dentures will be cleaned in the same way the natural teeth are cleaned. Good oral hygiene includes brushing the teeth twice each day and daily flossing. In addition, patients should continue to visit the dentist at set intervals for a thorough examination and professional cleaning. With good hygiene and maintenance, the implant-supported dentures can last for many years.
Stabilized Denture Types
Two different types of denture stabilization units exist which includes ball-retained and bar-retained dentures. Ball-retained dentures may also be called stud-attachment dentures. For this type of unit, the implants which are placed in the jawbone will contain metal attachments which are used to secure the dentures. In most cases, the implant attachments are similar to a ball shape, while the attachments on the denture is in the shape of a socket. When attached, the ball will fit securely into the socket. Some solutions are opposite in nature, however, it ultimately works the same with a ball and socket.
In comparison, bar-retained dentures require the placement of at least two to five implants in the jawbone. A metal bar, which follows the curve of the jawbone, is attached to each of the implants. The denture is then secured on top of the bar. The implants, dentures, or both may contain attachments aid in securing the pieces together.
Because of their limitations, some patients ask why they should get dentures in the first place. For some patients, they are also unable to afford the cost of dentures. In other cases, the patient does not have the time to plan for and complete the procedure involved. While some people may not care if they are missing teeth, there are other important reasons for replacing missing teeth with dentures. When the teeth are missing, there can be a slow disintegration of the facial structure. The missing teeth can also make patients look significantly older, impact the patient’s ability to eat, and affect their ability to speak well. When the bone is not stimulated, it can begin to resorb. Missing teeth can also lead to issues with dental hygiene.
Some of the key benefits associated with stabilizing dentures include the following:
- Easier to talk as the dentures do not slip and move
- Eliminates gum irritation and painful mouth sores
- Improved comfort compared to traditional dentures
- Permanent solution for missing teeth which can last many years
- Restored ability to chew foods, which aids in digestion for improved nutrition
- Simple process for cleaning and maintaining which involves regular hygiene of twice daily brushing and daily flossing
Do Not Ignore Missing Teeth
Some patients chose to ignore missing teeth because of a limited budget or time constraints. Missing teeth should never be ignored as it can result in other serious issues. Some of the problems which can be associated with living without teeth can include:
- Change in facial structure
- Problems with speaking and eating
- Causes patients to look older and can create sagging
- Reduced self-esteem and confidence
Follow up with your dentist to discuss if you may be a good candidate for denture stabilization.