Overdentures are dentures that are supported by and attached to dental implants or root filled tooth roots, which are utilised to increase the retention and support for the overdenture.
If you wish to have an implant supported overdenture, your Pearl Dental Clinic dentist will need to ensure there is enough bone left to install the implants, which are most commonly provided in areas where traditional fixtures are less stable.
If you wish to have a root supported overdenture, we need to check to make sure that you have the necessary number of roots of good quality and have tooth roots that are free of infection and roots that have had good root canal treatments.
Depending on their needs, patients will be offered one of two types of implant-supported overdenture, either ball-retained or bar-retained. Both types are manufactured from an acrylic base that is designed to look like gum and porcelain or acrylic teeth to give a natural tooth appearance.
In addition, the two types of implant retained overdentures need at least two dental implants to be installed in the jawbone in order to provide enough support for the overdenture.
Ball-retained overdentures possess a socket that is attached to up to five implants that have been placed in the mouth. Alternatively, bar-retained dentures include a thin metal bar that follows the curve of the jaw, with the dentures held in place by fitted clips.
Usually, the dental implants for overdentures are placed in the anterior region of the mouth due to the fact that most of the time, there is more bone in this area, even if teeth have been missing for a long period of time. Similarly, a lack of vital structures such as nerves in the front of the mouth means that there is less likelihood of the dental implants impinging on any vital structures.
Overdentures are great for patients who wish to have the benefits of dental implants but don’t necessarily wish to go through bone grafting and gum grafting surgeries that is usually required for multiple single implants or do not wish to incur the time and costs involved with having multiple dental implants.
In the case of tooth root supported overdentures, the advantage of not removing the remaining roots from the mouth is that they allow proprioception to remain and the jaw bone to remain around the roots and not to shrink away as is the case with complete dentures. The jaw bone can then be used in future for the installation of dental implants should that be required.
Alternatively to traditional fixtures, overdentures provide a large degree of stability because they are attached to and supported by the installation of dental implants in the jawbone. So overdentures have far better retention compared to complete dentures.
This means that individuals who have previously worried about their dentures falling out or becoming loose could experience an improved quality of life as a result.
Patients will not experience problems with speech and be able to eat comfortably knowing their overdentures are securely fitted following the procedure and they will not have to worry about using messy denture adhesives.
Although the timeframe can vary between individuals, it could take around three to six months including implant surgeries and the installation of the overdenture.
Patients will be asked to attend an initial consultation before the start of the treatment to ensure they qualify to receive overdentures. During this appointment, a Pearl Dental Clinic professional will review medical and dental records and take X-rays and impressions of the teeth to allow models to be created by the laboratory.
Following this, a cone beam CT scan may be carried out to make sure there is enough bone available to install the dental implants, as well as establish the exact location of the sinuses and nerves so they can be avoided throughout the procedure.
With the entire process taking around four visits to complete, your Pearl Dental Clinic practitioner will create a temporary denture to be worn throughout the process, which could be ideal for people who are worried about their appearance.
The first surgery will involve the placement of the implants in the jawbone, where an incision is made in the gum in order to place the implants.
Following the initial procedure, it is vital to avoid putting pressure on the newly installed implants to speed up healing time and limit the feeling of discomfort.
After the healing process is complete and the implants have fused with the jawbone, the second surgery is able to be carried out by your Pearl Dental Clinic professional.
During this simpler procedure, the tops of the implants are revealed by making a small incision into the gums where a healing collar is placed to allow the gum to heal in the correct manner and make room for the fixture of the overdentures.
In the final months of the process, the teeth are secured into the overdenture framework correctly, creating a completely new smile for the patient.
For the best results, patients should remove their overdentures at night and carry out good denture cleaning to ensure the fixtures stay in good condition for the long-term. The implants should also be cleaned on a regular basis to prevent the onset of infection.
Patients should attend regular check ups following the installation of their overdentures to ensure any routine maintenance treatment required is carried out when necessary.