An implant supported denture is an overdenture, that it attached to an implant, but also receives support from it. It is different from the regular denture, because they are planted on directly on the gum tissue. They are mainly used for people who are toothless, but do have enough bones in the jaw, who serves as support to the implants. The dentures have special attachments, and they are then placed on the implants. These types of dentures are usually made for the lower jaw, because the regular implants are not so stable when put on the lower jaw. However, there is the possibility of you having supported dentures for the upper jaw as well. More information about these types of dentures in the following sections.
Types of implant supported dentures
Two types of dentures that are supported by an implant exist. They are the bar-retained and the ball-retained. Both types are made from acrylic, and they both look like the gums in a person’s mouth. Then, the dentist attaches teeth made from acrylic or from porcelain. At least two implants are needed for support of the both types of dentures. A bar-retained denture is actually a thin bar made from metal. It has the curvature of the person’s jaw, and has at least two, and a maximum of five implants that are put in the bone. In addition, the dentist can attach clips and other accessories to the denture, to the bar, or in some case, to both. The denture (teeth) is then placed on to the bar, and is the clips hold it in its place. With the ball-retained dentures, every implant that is placed in the bone has an attachment made from metal, which fits into an attachment that is found on the denture. The attachments usually have the shape of a ball. They are called the male attachments, and they fit into the so-called female attachments, that can be found on the dentures.
The process of implanting the implant supported dentures is not so complex, but it takes some time. First, the implants that go in the jawbone are placed. There is more bone matter at the front of the jaw, so the implants are usually placed there. In addition, there are not many nerves at the front of the jaw, so placement is fairly easy. The time needed to finish the implanting depends on many things. The shortest possible time is five months for the lower jaw, while for the upper jaw that time is seven months. Two procedures are included in this period of time. There are some cases that last more than a year, but that is only with people who are in need of bone grafting. As we said, two surgeries are performed. With the first, the implants are placed in the bone of the jaw. With the second, the tops of the implants are exposed, in order for the dentures to be clipped on. The second surgery happens three to six months after the first one. Some dentists do it all at once. The bar and the implants are placed during one surgery, and the rate of success is rather high.
Complications from implant supported dentures
As with all surgeries, some complications can occur, especially with the bar-retained dentures. These dentures need more space on the framework for the special attachments, so that means less space for the artificial teeth. Because of that, the teeth can sometimes get loose, or even fall of from their base. However, this is not a serious problem, and it has a quick solution.