People lose their teeth for a lot of reasons, and it’s more common than you think. The ADA estimates that on average, American adults are missing, or about to lose, at least three teeth at some point. Whether your tooth loss is the result of injury, disease, or tooth decay, Marineland Dental Care (in Kennewick, WA) has the tooth replacement options you’re looking for.
We offer a range of dental implants (artificial teeth that are permanently placed in your jaw), restorations (dental bridges, which even come in porcelain), and dentures, which most people don’t realize is a prosthetic. It wasn’t always like this; there was a time when there was very little to do about missing teeth, aside from bridges and dentures.
One of the more interesting develops in tooth replacement solutions combines the reliability of dental implants with the dentures that most people are used to. They’re called implant supported dentures. Implant supported dentures are superior to dentures in a lot of ways, and if you’re tired of the frustration caused by dentures that don’t fit well any longer (which besides being annoying and embarrassing is also dangerous, as poorly fitted dentures make your teeth, gums, and other oral tissues vulnerable to infection and disease), you might want to learn more about them.
What’s Wrong With The Dentures I Have Now?
Conventional dentures have been around for a while, but it was only until relatively recently that fundamental improvements have been made in their design and function (implant supported dentures).
If you wear dentures now, we probably don’t need to spend a lot of time on the drawbacks of dentures, but many people don’t realize that besides the inconveniences they present, dentures (especially those that don’t fit properly) can actually be dangerous to your oral health, and your health in general.
Dentures Make You Vulnerable to Infection
Dentures that are poorly fitted make you vulnerable to infection. The slipping and sliding of dentures that aren’t properly in place will irritate your oral tissues and gums. This can create mouth sores (or canker sores) at the very least, which are caused by the rubbing of the dentures against your tissues. These sores become gateways for bacteria, and dentures, even if you do a good job of keeping them clean, can carry a lot of bacteria that can be dangerous.
A couple conditions that can be caused by slippery dentures include:
Deep cracks or splits that form at the corners of your mouth might be a sign of angular cheilitis, which is a condition caused by closing your mouth over improperly fitted dentures (referred to as overclosure). This is minor, and you can take care of it with a lip balm; of course, why not just avoid it?
This condition is indicated by the presence of thick, hard patches of white in the mouth. These can’t be removed, and are caused by chronic irritation created (once again) by dentures that don’t fit correctly. These spots might even be a precursor indication of oral cancer. In addition to slippery dentures, this condition can be exacerbated by tobacco use (which you shouldn’t be using anyway if you’re wearing dentures, or any other dental restoration, or really at all, because, you know, smoking is bad for you).
Poorly fitted dentures can also contribute to bone loss.
I Take Good Care of My Dentures; So Why Don’t They Fit Well Anymore?
The conditions above are literally the tip of the iceberg of the things that can go wrong due to dentures that are unstable, usually due to poor fit. Dentures can lose their fit from wear, like anything else, but remember also that your body is a thing that is in a constant change. Dentures lose correct fit as a result of sometimes very subtle changes in your oral cavity, or even weight loss can significantly change the shape of your gums and tissues to such a degree that the dentures don’t fit properly anymore.
How Do Implant Supported Dentures Help?
Implant supported dentures eliminate the problems caused by the slippage and movement of conventional dentures. Implant supported dentures can be placed on either your upper or lower jaw, although slippage problems are often most pronounced in the lower jaw.
As their name implies, they are dentures (prosthetic devices) that are held in place, or supported, by dental implants. Dental implants are permanent fixtures, and they are placed directly into your jawbone, and under your gum tissue. It’s a surgical procedure, so you should be able to tolerate anesthesia, and there are other factors that you’ll need to discuss with your dentist to make sure that you’re able to accept dental implants.
The implants placed to support dentures work in a four point arrangement; the dentures can snap on and snap off easily for maintenance and cleaning.
When your dentures are in, the implants will hold them firmly in place, so there is no excess rubbing of the dentures against your oral tissues. This will prevent the common problems of infection and disease that happen with conventional dentures. Implant supported dentures can even prevent bone loss (when a tooth is missing, bone density is lost in the area it was previously located); conventional dentures actually may even accelerate bone loss.
How Can I Find Out If Implant Supported Dentures Are For Me?
Are you tired of the slipping, the clicking, and the embarrassment, even danger, of conventional braces? Are you tired of dental bridges that need to be replaced too often? Implant supported dentures can be the solution you need!
Your dentist will help you determine if implant supported dentures are right for you. Make an appointment : dial 509-591-0515, or click here to access our online appointment form.