Tooth loss has an immediate and obvious impact on the appearance of the smile, but what is even more devastating is the long-term effect that missing teeth have on a person’s overall oral health. Tooth loss compromises oral functions and can damage the strength and structure of the mouth.
Dentures replace several missing teeth or an entire arch of teeth to improve the function and appearance of the smile. When a patient undergoes treatment, they can choose traditional dentures or implant-supported dentures, which are anchored by a set of dental implants, or surgically implanted titanium screws.
Dr. Neil L. Starr discusses the differences between traditional vs. implant-supported dentures with our Washington, DC patients so that they can choose a treatment option that is best-suited to their unique needs and desires.
How Is a Traditional Denture Supported?
A traditional denture is composed of a series of false teeth that sit on a plastic base that resembles the gum line. Traditional dentures get their support from the patient’s natural gums and the bone structure of the jaw.
A traditional denture sits over the gum line, where it creates a tight seal. Denture adhesive can be used to further strengthen the bond and hold the dentures in place.
Benefits of a Traditional Denture
Today’s dentures differ greatly from those made in the past. Using digital technology and imaging, we can create dentures that fit closely to the shape of each patient’s mouth. This creates a secure and comfortable fit.
Patients who choose a traditional denture rather than an implant-supported denture often do so because treatment is non-invasive and the cost is lower. Patients who choose a traditional denture should keep in mind that the shape of their mouth will change over time, and they will eventually need to get a new denture that accommodates these changes.
What Is an Implant-supported Denture?
An implant-supported denture is sometimes referred to as a permanent denture, because it is not removable like a traditional denture.
Implant-supported dentures attach to posts that connect to a series of dental implants. These tiny screws fuse with the patient’s jawbone and act as artificial tooth roots.
Once an implant-supported denture is in place, it will look, feel, and function just like the natural teeth.
Benefits of an Implant-supported Denture
Implant-supported dentures require a series of dental treatments, and are more costly than traditional dentures. Still, they are a popular restorative dentistry treatment because of the numerous benefits they provide. Implant-supported dentures can be brushed, flossed, and cared for just like the natural teeth, making them a far more convenient restoration.
Implant-supported dentures also are more secure and durable than traditional dentures. These restorations will not shift or slip out of place, no matter what a person is eating. They can withstand the normal wear and tear that the teeth endure and, with proper care, can last a lifetime.
From an oral health standpoint, the greatest benefit of an implant-supported denture is that it provides stimulation to the jawbone. This prevents the loss of healthy bone tissues. With dental implants in place, the jawbone will remain strong and the mouth will maintain its structure.
Schedule an Appointment
There are many factors to consider when choosing between a traditional and implant-supported denture, but Dr. Neil L. Starr is happy to help patients determine which is the best for their unique situation. To learn more about these treatment options, schedule an appointment with Dr. Starr at your earliest convenience by calling (202) 293-7177.