For hundreds of years, the only way to replace multiple missing teeth has been with removable partial or full dentures. While dentures restore function and are aesthetically satisfactory, they are rarely very comfortable, they do not feel like real teeth and in many cases they are chronically loose. Today the use of multiple dental implants can be used to eliminate dentures completely or to modify them so that they are stable, comfortable functional and aesthetically pleasing.
There are several different treatment options to replace removable or full dentures:
Like individual implants, multiple implants can be placed in the bone to replace all teeth that are missing. Depending on the number of implants and the number of teeth to be replaced, either individual crowns or fixed bridges may be made over the implants. These will be cemented and will remain fixed in a patient's mouth, virtually replacing all of the teeth that the patient was missing.
For patients with full upper or lower dentures, who either cannot have enough implants placed to allow for fixed bridgework or who do not want to undergo the expense of full arch fixed implants, a new solution is available. The full arch implant prosthesis is a less expensive fixed alternative. Several implants will be placed and either porcelain and acrylic or zirconia teeth in the form of a denture will be fabricated in the lab and placed over the implants. These will be fixed and do not need to be removed. They will provide the patient with a stable fixed solution to replace their existing dentures.
The chronically loose set of dentures can now be replaced by supporting them with multiple dental implants. Dental implants can be placed and either a bar, ball retention or locater will be placed over the implant. The denture will then snap in over the bar, ball or locater locking the denture into place. This will give the patient a denture that is rigid, well functioning and functional. It will eliminate the use of denture adhesives and will allow the patient the ability to eat many of the foods they were unable to with regular dentures.