Implant Dentures Los Angeles
Implant dentures are a type of dentures supported and fixed to traditional dental implants. Regular dentures sit on the gums, while implant-supported dentures rest on the implants. This treatment is used for someone who doesn’t have any teeth in the jaw but has some bone, which can support implants. The denture has special attachments which can easily attach to the implants.
Implant dentures are especially useful for the lower jaw because regular dentures usually have problems with stability. Regular dentures usually are pretty stable on the upper jaw, but however, implant-supported dentures can be attached to the upper jaw as well, as it provides more stability.
When it’s time to brush, you can remove your implant-supported dentures and clean your gum area. The dentures can be removed anytime you want because they are not fixed like crowns or bridges.
Types of implant dentures
- Bar-retained – contained in a thin metal bar, which is attached from two to five implants. There are clips and other attachments that are fitted to the bar.
- Ball-retained – in each implant there is ball-shaped attachments that fit other attachments on the dentures and in this way fixes the dentures over the implants.
Both types of dentures need at least two implants to support them. They are both made of an acrylic base, which looks like gums. The dentures’ teeth are made from acrylic or porcelain material, and look exactly like natural teeth. They are fixed to the base.
When you lose your teeth, you begin to lose bone in that area as well. Usually, there is more bone left in the front area of the jaw, so implants are usually placed there. What’s more, there are fewer nerves and other structures in that area that may cause difficulties with the implantation process during surgery.
To complete the implantation the shortest expected time is around 5 months for the lower jaw and about 7 months for the upper jaw. However, it may take a year or more if you need a bone grafting or similar procedures.
During the first surgery, implants are placed in the jawbone. During the second procedure, the tops of the implants are fixed. This occurs 3 to 6 months after the first surgery.
Depending on the case, a one-stage procedure may be viable. During such treatment, your dentist will place the supporting bar and implants in one step. Such procedures have high success rates. Your dentist will evaluate whether or not a one-stage procedure would be successful for you.
Before your implantation procedure, you will need to have a consultation with your dentist. It is necessary to fully examine your mouth and plan the overall treatment as well as the steps of the implantation process. Your dentist will inform you about alternative treatments, how many visits you may need, cost, risks and answer all your questions, thoroughly. Once you decide that implants are the best choice for you, your dentist will make some X-rays, review your medical records, make dental models with impressions of your mouth. In some cases, you may need a CT scan, which the doctor will provide. Such examinations are required locate your sinuses, mandibular canal, nerves and other anatomical structures that may influence implantation process. It will also help your dentist to evaluate your bone loss and plan the location and inclination of the implant. Moreover, CT scans will determine if you need bone grafting or sinus augmentation procedures.
If you don’t have full dentures to replace your missing teeth, your dentist will make temporary dentures for you to use, until the permanent implant-supported denture is fabricated. It will take about 4 visits to finish such dentures. With such temporary dentures, your dentist will be able to determine the best teeth position for your final denture. Moreover, if something happens to your permanent dentures, you will have your temporary ones as a backup to use. After the temporary dentures will be finished, your dentist will make a copy of it and use it as a guide in order to help to position the implants in the right angle.
During the first surgery, the implants are placed in the jawbone. Firstly, your surgeon will make an incision. Next, he would drill a hole in the bone and place the implant in it. The incision will be stitched and closed. After this surgery, you will need to avoid pressure on the implants.This will help facilitate healing and integration. A temporary denture will be made with direct pressure on areas away from the implants. You may also get a soft reline in order to reduce the pressure on the implants. The healing process will take three to six months, depending on which jawbone the implants are placed.
The second surgery can be scheduled when the implants have fused to the bone. Your dentist will make an X-ray to determine if your implants are ready for the second surgery. The second surgery is much simpler than the first one. Your surgeon would make a small incision in your gums in order to expose the tops of the implants and to place healing caps. The caps on the implants help to guide gum tissue to heal correctly. The healing caps help to hold the gums away from the heads of the implants. The cap would need to be placed for 10 to 14 days. After that, your dentist would adjust your temporary dentures and provide you with new soft reline. Two weeks after the second surgery, the healing caps would be replaced with some regular abutments. After such period of time, your gums will be ready for the dentist to make an impression of abutments and the jaw. Such procedure will allow the dental laboratory to make models and the permanent dentures.
Denture insertion and try-in
At this point of the treatment, the metal bars will be placed on the abutments. Also, there will be a “try-on” of your dentures to see if the framework fits comfortably. The framework would be seated on the implants and the metal bars. Once it fits properly, the teeth will be placed on the framework of wax. The whole denture will be tried in your mouth. If everything fits correctly, the dentures will be made permanently. Also, the bar and attachments will be secured. On the next visit, you will get completed permanent dentures inserted in your mouth. The dentures will be clipped on the bar or ball attachments. Your temporary dentures will get a new reline again. This will allow you to use it as backup dentures in case something happens to your new dentures.
Taking care of your implant dentures
You should remove your dentures at night and clean them carefully around the attachments. Your dentist will check if your dentures are secured and test all their parts. Even though the restoration is stable, it may still move slightly while chewing. Such movement may cause sore spots. The dentist will check your gums and the bite after the insertion of the denture. Attachments may need to be replaced after 6-12 months because they are made of plastic, so they usually experience wear after a period of time.
Risks and complications
There are some risks of implants failing. The bar-retained denture can carry certain risks as well. Teeth can loosen from the base because there is less available space for the teeth to be fixed on the denture framework. But this problem is usually easily fixed.
It is very important that the bar is evenly balanced on the implants. Because there can be extra strains on the bar that can cause screws to loosen up. Chances of this occurring increase if you grind or clench your teeth. Then the denture might break and implants might loosen up.
Benefits of Implant Dentures
- Such restorations will be more stable than regular dentures.
- It is easier to speak and eat with implant dentures.
- You won’t need to worry if your dentures might fall from your mouth while you eat or speak anymore.
- On the other hand, you will have to avoid hard and sticky foods, because they might damage your dentures.
- If you experience nausea with regular dentures, implant dentures on the upper jaw might lessen the symptoms. This happens because implant-supported dentures may cover less of the palate than the regular dentures.
If you are interested in getting implant-supported dentures, or you have any questions/concerns about the treatment, feel free to visit us at Southern California Implant Centers and schedule your consultation. You can call us: 310-231-5100.
INSTALLING THE FIXED BRIDGE– STEP-BY-STEP
The course of treatment described here is one of several options available. Consult your dentist to find out what the best solution is for you, given your specific condition.
|1: Before the procedure
The dentist determines what needs to be done and prepares both himself and the patient for the coming treatment procedure.
|2: Installing the implants
The first step is installing dental implants to replace the lost tooth roots. In this case, five implants are used. Temporary teeth are attached that enable you to eat and function like normal while waiting for the permanent bridge to be installed.
|3: Attaching the bridge
The final bridge is securely installed on top of the implants. With a full jaw replacement like this, it normally takes 2-3 visits to have the bridge completely attached.
|4: End result
Your new teeth should be hard to tell from natural – both for you and others. People who have had traditional dentures before getting a fixed bridge often describe this as an overwhelming and very positive experience.
ALTERNATIVES TO A FIXED BRIDGE
|An alternative to a fixed bridge is a removable overdenture, which is anchored on implants. The old fashioned denture has many disadvantages and should be avoided if possible.|
|Removable, implant anchored overdenture
A removable full denture that is connected to either a ball or bar attachment, which in turn is anchored on two or more implants in the front part of the jaw.The implants help keep the denture in place and provide better function and comfort. Cost is usually the reason why this solution is chosen over a fixed bridge – although the end result can’t be compared.
|Removable full denture
A denture that is loosely placed on top of the gum to cover the lost teeth. This alternative has no real advantages – except for its low price and easy installation.The disadvantages are many: discomfort in eating, poor esthetics, affected speech, and sore gums from denture movement. Moreover, a full denture placed in the upper jaw severely reduces the sense of taste.
Make an appointment today with Los Angeles periodontist and dental implant specialist Dr. Jacob Elisha by calling 310-853-5670 .