For patients struggling with the inconveniences and discomfort of traditional dentures, Dr. Colin Morton offers a state-of-the-art alternative. Dental implants have revolutionized the way in which dentures can replace missing teeth. Implant dentures can restore your teeth with natural-looking results that improve the functionality of your mouth as well as the beauty of your smile.
To learn more about implant dentures, we encourage you to read through the expansive information provided below. If you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule a consultation with our skilled dentist, please feel free to contact our practice online or by telephone today.
- What Is an Implant Denture?
- Implant-Retained vs. Implant-Supported Dentures
- Implant Dentures Benefits
- Implant Denture Options
- Teeth in a Day
- Cleaning and Care
- How Long Implant Dentures Last
- Implant Dentures Cost
What Is an Implant Denture?
Also referred to as an implant-supported denture or anchored denture, an implant denture is a full arch restoration designed to replace an entire row of upper or lower teeth. In contrast to conventional dentures that are held in place by oral adhesives, implant dentures are attached to a number of dental implants anchored in the jawbone, providing exceptional comfort and security when eating, speaking, and smiling.
Implant-Retained vs. Implant-Supported Dentures
Implant-retained dentures and implant-supported dentures differ in the following ways:
- Implant-Retained Dentures – Fewer dental implants (and sometimes only mini dental implants) are needed for implant-retained dentures, but the force of the bite is mostly absorbed by the gums. As a result, implant-retained dentures do not entirely replicate a natural bite. In addition, they need to be taken out nightly for cleaning and proper oral hygiene.
- Implant-Supported Dentures – With implant-supported dentures, the force of the bite is directed through the dental implants and into the jawbone. Though a greater number of implants is required in comparison to implant-retained dentures, this creates a much stronger, more natural bite. Furthermore, implant-supported dentures do not typically detach from the implants, eliminating the need for extra cleaning and maintenance.
What Are the Benefits of Implant Dentures?
For women and men seeking to replace multiple missing and/or severely damaged teeth, the benefits of implant-supported dentures can include:
- Increased stability
- No messy adhesives
- Improved comfort
- Preservation of bone and tissue
- Natural-looking teeth
- Long-lasting results
- New teeth in a single office visit
Since these dentures are securely fastened into place by a set of dental implants, the slippage, irritation, use of adhesives, and loss of bone and tissue that are associated with more traditional methods of tooth replacement can be avoided. In addition, these traditional denture alternatives can be custom-designed to fit the precise dimensions of your mouth and crafted to resemble your natural teeth.
What Are My Different Implant Denture Options?
At our practice, Dr. Morton utilizes a same day anchored dentures system known as TeethXpress®. Depending on your specific needs, the following implant denture options are available:
All-on-4® Implant Dentures
All-on-4® implant supported dentures are designed to replace missing teeth on the upper or lower arch using only four dental implants. With this technique, four implants will be inserted into the jawbone along either the upper or lower arch, with the two posterior implants being placed at an angle to maximize jaw bone availability and improve stability. Once in position, a customized set of dentures is secured to the tips of the four implant posts, completing the restoration.
All-on-6 Implant Dentures
All-on-6 anchored dentures are very similar to All-on-4®, with the difference being that six dental implants are used to anchor the upper or lower arch prosthetic. This technique is typically an appropriate option when four implants would not provide a sufficient amount of support for the full arch restoration due to factors such as jawbone quality/density.
Full Mouth Restoration
The term “full mouth restoration” refers to replacing all of one’s upper and lower teeth using implant-supported dentures. This is accomplished by placing either an All-on-4® or All-on-6 implant denture on the upper arch, as well as an All-on-4® or All-on-6 implant denture on the lower arch. The final outcome is a fully functional, natural-looking set of new teeth.
Teeth in a Day with TeethXpress® — Same Day Implant Dentures Procedure
Dr. Morton is a certified provider of TeethXpress®—a state-of-the-art implant denture system designed to allow patients to receive anchored dentures in a day. During your initial consultation, he will perform a thorough oral evaluation to determine if TeethXpress® implant dentures would be right for your unique needs and goals. If it is decided that you are a good candidate, Dr. Morton will create a customized treatment plan and cover every aspect of care in complete detail to ensure you have a full understanding of what to expect based upon your individual circumstances.
On the day of your scheduled TeethXpress® procedure, Dr. Morton will carefully place four (or six) dental implants in strategic locations along the jawbone of the upper or lower arch, typically using local anesthesia. If needed, this implant placement process will then be repeated for the opposite arch. Once all implants are secured into position, your denture(s) will be affixed to the top of each post using special prosthetic screws. Depending on the specific treatment plan formulated during the initial visit, Dr. Morton can use your current denture(s), or he can utilize a new set that he will have custom-made prior to the procedure. In either case, you should be able to leave our office with new teeth the same day.
Following the TeethXpress® implant denture treatment, you may experience some minor discomfort, but this can usually be alleviated with medication. Most individuals feel well enough to return to work and other normal daily routines the following day, and they can once again enjoy all of their favorite foods and beverages. Ultimately, Dr. Morton’s patients have been able to chew, drink, and speak with ease after switching from traditional dentures to implant-supported dentures, and they have beautiful smiles that can give a renewed sense of confidence in their professional and personal lives.
How Do I Clean and Care for My Implant Dentures?
Implant-supported dentures look and function just like natural teeth—and they should be treated as such. This means brushing and flossing at least twice daily to keep the restorations and surrounding gum/bone tissue free of harmful bacteria, as well as returning to the dentist for professional cleanings bi-annually (or as often as recommended by Dr. Morton based on your oral health).
In addition to maintaining optimal oral hygiene, properly caring for your implant dentures includes avoiding bad habits like fingernail biting, crunching on hard candy or ice, and using your teeth as a tool to open bags, packages, and various other items—all of which can cause excessive wear and tear, potentially shortening the lifespan of your restoration. While there are generally no long-term diet restrictions for patients with implant-supported dentures, Dr. Morton also recommends exercising caution when chewing foods that may contain hard pits (such as certain olive and cherry varieties) for similar reasons.
How Long Do Implant-Supported Dentures Last?
When treatment is properly performed by a skilled and experienced dentist, implant dentures can be extremely long-lasting. In fact, the dental implants themselves actually become a permanent part of the mouth once fully fused to the jawbone, and the customized denture restoration secured on top usually lasts many years—often even decades.
To help prolong the lifespan of your implant-supported dentures, Dr. Morton advises the following:
- Maintain optimal oral hygiene habits
- Schedule professional dental cleanings at least twice annually
- Refrain from smoking and/or the use of other tobacco products
- Avoid forcefully biting down on hard foods and items
- Wear a protective mouthpiece when participating in physical sports or activities
Additionally, if you suffer from teeth grinding or clenching (bruxism) while sleeping, the use of a mouthguard at night can aid in protecting your implant-supported dentures from these potentially damaging forces, helping to increase the longevity of your restoration.
How Much Do Implant-Supported Dentures Cost?
The total cost of implant dentures will depend on several different factors unique to each patient. Some of the most notable elements influencing price include:
- Whether upper dentures, lower dentures, or both are placed
- The number of dental implants used to secure the dentures
- Whether or not tooth extraction, gum care, and/or bone grafting is needed
- The particular implant denture system and quality of materials/technology utilized
- The overall complexity of the case
In addition to these treatment-specific components, implant-supported denture pricing can also be impacted by the expertise and experience of the dentist, as well as the geographic location of the practice.
To receive a personalized quote for the cost of implant-supported dentures, you will need to schedule an appointment with Dr. Morton. During this visit, he can assess your oral health and dental needs, formulate a customized treatment strategy, and provide a breakdown of all associated expenses based on your individualized plan. If you wish, a member of our team can also speak with you about dental financing options at this time to help make treatment as budget-friendly as possible.
Schedule an Appointment
If you would like more information on this traditional denture alternative, or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Morton, please contact our office today.