My mother is in her late 70s. She’s complained about her dentures for a few years now. She’s had them close to twenty years, so I can’t imagine how they’d just start hurting her now, could they be breaking down? Either way, her neighbor at the assisted living has a son that’s a dentist. He told her about an all-on-4 procedure which could make her feel better. I’m worried they’re taking advantage of her. Is it safe for a woman her age to get an unnecessary surgical procedure?
It’s admirable that you’re looking out for your mother. I want to start with why her dentures were hurting her. You mentioned she had them nearly 20 years. Your mother is very likely suffering from facial collapse. When her teeth were removed, her jawbone began to shrink realizing she no longer had tooth roots to support.
The caused her dentures to no longer fit. They probably have been quite painful for a while now. She’d also have trouble keeping them in her mouth. I don’t blame her for wanting a new solution for her teeth.
All-on-4 for the Elderly
If your mother is in good health, she’ll be fine having surgery. Replacing her dentures for dental implants will improve her quality of life considerably. She must have difficulty eating currently and she’ll need nutrition to keep up her strength for many years to come.
To put your mind at ease about her age, the oldest person on record to get dental implants was 100 years old. At last check, she and her implants are doing well.
All-on-Four Dental implants are often given to patients who’ve lost a significant amount of bone structure but still want dental implants. It’s a procedure which anchors them at an angle to give them more staying power. However, if your mother has the money, there’s a better option. However, either will be better than her dentures.
Have her compare the All-on-Four implants with implant supported dentures. She’d need a bone grafting procedure. It is a simple outpatient procedure which will build up her jawbone and allow her to have more sturdy dental implants placed.
To put your mind at ease about her age, a study entitled, “Fixed implant-supported prostheses in elderly patients: a 5-year retrospective study of 133 edentulous patients older than 79 years”, studies a younger group and those 80 years of age and older who all received implants. The study showed the older group did just as well as the younger group.
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