Dental veneers are popular with cosmetic dentists, who use them to cover up minor imperfections on patients’ teeth. If you are considering dental veneers as a way to improve your smile, you will be happy to know that installing veneers is a fairly simple process.When a cosmetic dentist recommends dental veneers, they will lay out…
How a Cosmetic Dentist Can Restore Your Smile With Implant Supported Dentures
Implant supported dentures have a distinct advantage over traditional dentures. Dental implants that sit in the jaw anchor the dentures in place, preventing them from slipping. This makes them a more comfortable alternative. Immovable dentures look and feel like natural teeth. They allow their wearer to speak, eat and laugh with confidence.
They also help maintain the shape and structure of the jaw, which adds definition to a person's face. These are all great reasons to look into implant supported dentures. You can start your research right here, by learning about the structure of implant supported dentures.
How implant supported dentures work
Traditional dentures have an acrylic base that resembles the gums. The base holds a set of false teeth that are made of porcelain or acrylic. These types of dentures stay in place with the help of a framework that extends from the base of the dentures to the roof (or floor) of the mouth.
Implant supported dentures are a little different. Although they have the gums and the teeth, they lack the framework that rests on the structure of the mouth. Instead, the dentures have clips or allowances for abutments. This brings us to the support structure of implant supported dentures.
The dentures are supported by dental implants that are embedded in the jaw. The implants connect to the dentures via abutments, which are posts that extend from the implant and past the gum line. A cosmetic dentist will attach specially made dentures to the ends of the abutments that sit above the gum line. Here is what a person should expect when they see a dentist for overdentures.
1. Patient evaluation
First, the dentist will perform a visual exam to confirm that their patient is in good oral health. The dentist will also order imaging tests like X-rays or CT scans to find out if the person has enough bone to anchor several implants. The dentist will also find out if the patient has a medical condition that could negatively affect the outcome of dental implant surgery. If the patient is a good candidate for implant supported dentures, the dentist will schedule the first procedure.
2. Tooth extraction
If the patient has natural teeth that are failing, the dentist will extract them. Depending on the individual patient, the dentist will either allow the patient to recover from the extraction or proceed with the next step.
3. Bone graft surgery
If the patient is in good health, both oral and physical, but lacks enough bone to anchor the implants, the dentist will order a bone graft for their patient. The procedure is a minor oral surgery that involves exposing the jawbone and placing donor bone in the jaw. Patients often undergo the procedure under general anesthesia.
It takes a few months for the bone graft to integrate with the rest of the jaw. The cosmetic dentist will monitor the progress of the bone graft. Once the graft takes, the dentist schedules the next procedure.
4. Dental implant placement
Now that the patient has enough bone to support an implant, the cosmetic dentist will order dental implant surgery. Here is how it goes:
- First, an oral surgeon numbs and/or sedates the patient
- They then make a small incision in the area where they need to place the implant
- The incision exposes the jawbone, which allows the dentist to drill a small hole into the jaw
- The oral surgeon then places the implant in the hole, which takes the form of a hollow screw with threads on its outer and inner surfaces
- With the implant in place, the oral surgeon will either cover the implant by screwing on a recovery cap
- Alternatively, they will attach an abutment, which also has threads on the end, that goes into the hollow part of the implant
- The surgeon will suture the gums shut, covering the recovery cap
- Alternatively, they will close the gums around the abutment, whose outer end sits above the gumline
The oral surgeon then sends the patient home to recover. They provide after-care instructions to guide the patient through the recovery period. The cosmetic dentist will monitor the patient’s healing process until the patient heals. Once the implant fuses with the jawbone, the dentist schedules the next procedure.
If the oral surgeon places the abutment along with the implant, then the next procedure would be the placement of the abutment. If not, then the oral surgeon will have to schedule an additional procedure to attach the abutment.
5. Loading the implant with dentures
This procedure does not require any surgery. The cosmetic dentist simply attaches a set of custom dentures onto the abutments. The dentures are fabricated in a dental lab, based on an impression of the patient’s dental arch.
You do not have to put up with the hassle of traditional dentures
Regular dentures can start to come loose after a while and cause trouble as you go about your day, which can affect your quality of life. Do not settle for loose, bothersome dentures. Call or visit our Charlotte clinic and let our cosmetic dentist find you a better alternative to traditional dentures. You may find that implant supported dentures are just the thing to put a new spring into your step.
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