I have had dentures for over ten years. I have hated them from the beginning but wasn’t in the position to do anything else. Now my circumstances have changed but I’m wondering whether it is too late to do anything since it has been so long.
It is never too late to improve our dental health. In this case, the upgrade can literally save your jaw. When your teeth were removed, your body started a process known as facial collapse. This is where it removes the minerals in your jawbone are resorbed to be used elsewhere in your body. It’s your brain’s way of being the most efficient to the resources available. Because you no longer have teeth, it makes the assumption you no longer need the jawbone to retain the teeth roots. After about ten years, it becomes difficult to keep your dentures in place. Eventually, you’ll lose so much jawbone, you won’t be able to keep your dentures in at all.
The way to prevent facial collapse is by placing a series of prosthetics in your jawbone that mimic your teeth roots. This tells your brain there are still teeth there and you will need that jawbone fully in-tact. The best tooth replacement option for that is to get dental implants.
When you are missing all of your teeth, it is too expensive to replace each tooth with a dental implant. However, there is a great solution. You can get implant overdentures. This places between four to six dental implants and then secures them to a denture.
It’s not at all like wearing removable dentures. Because they’re anchored to the implants, they’re completely secure. You’ll find your chewing capacity goes up significantly with the implants. Best of all, you’ll never have to worry about facial collapse.
Because you have already been in dentures for at least ten years, you likely are beginning to experience some of the problems associated with facial collapse. You are probably going to need to have some bone grafting done to ensure you have enough bone structure to retain the dental implants.
This blog is brought to you by Atlanta Periodontist Dr. David Pumphrey.