In years past, patients who were missing most or all of their teeth had to resort to conventional dentures. These appliances, while effective for restoring appearance, they do not restore full function or oral health. For this reason, dental implants have become the most reliable and effective teeth replacement options available. Dental implants can replace a single missing tooth as well as an entire dental arch. Here, we will discuss fixed vs removeable full-arch replacement using dental implants so you can be well-informed about your treatment options. |
Like their traditional counterparts, implant-supported dentures are removable. The difference, however, is that these restorations have additional stability provided by dental implant posts. For example, the denture “snaps on” to the implants so it does not move or shift around when eating or speaking. An implant-supported denture can still be removed for cleaning. In fact, patients still leave them out overnight to soak. But when they are placed in the mouth, they stay put until they are removed again. In order to support a denture, most patients require two to six dental implants per arch.
Those who do not want to deal with a removeable appliance can choose implant-supported bridges. These restorations are similar to conventional bridges. However, they are connected to dental implants rather than natural teeth. This is why it has become a popular option for those seeking full-arch teeth replacement. To achieve this goal, a determined number of dental implants are placed within the jaw. Once this is complete, the implant posts must fuse to the bone in a process called osseointegration. After the implants have fully healed, custom dental bridges can be connected to complete your smile. Because this type of restoration is fixed, or non-removeable, patients will need to take special care to clean underneath their dental bridges. Your dentist can remove the bridges when necessary to clean around the implants. In most cases, patients require six to eight implants per arch to support these restorations.
Patients who are lacking adequate bone density do not qualify for standard dental implants. As a result, many edentulous patients had no other options besides traditional dentures. However, the revolutionary All-on-4® treatment makes it possible for those with bone loss to receive implants. As the name suggests, All-on-4 offers fixed full-arch teeth replacement using just four dental implants. These posts are placed strategically in the jawbone. For example, there are two vertical posts near the front of the jaw and two angled posts near the back of the jaw. This allows pressure to be evenly exerted across the entire bite. As a result, most patients who undergo this procedure can receive a temporary restoration the very same day, offering dramatic aesthetic results. Which Option is Right for Me? The decision to undergo dental implant surgery is an extremely personal one. If you are thinking about full-arch teeth replacement with dental implants, there are a few questions to ask:
• Do I want a fixed or removeable prosthesis?
• How much bone loss have I experienced?
• How much stability do I want?
• What is my budget?
During a consultation with an experienced implant dentist, he or she can help you weight your options and make the best choice for your situation.
If you are missing several or all of your teeth, consider what an implant-supported restoration can do for you. To learn more about dental implants, reach out to the team at Metropolitan Dental Care, serving Denver and Lone Tree.
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