Can complete dentures be made secure?
Yes they can. This is much more likely on the top jaw than the bottom and in either case requires careful technique and multiple visits to get them right. Stability in dentures is a combination of a good fit with the gum, a well shaped denture and an even bite.
Can complete dentures be made to look natural?
Yes they can. The typical artificial appearance of dentures is often caused by excessive symmetry or evenness in the alignment of the teeth and the use of denture teeth that are too white or too small. By introducing minor but noticeable imperfections into the alignment and by using high quality denture teeth that are a realistic size and colour, it is possible to create a much more natural appearance. It is also often possible to closely replicate the size, shape and alignment of a person’s original natural teeth based on old photographs.
How can implants help with stabilizing complete dentures?
There are several ways. It is possible to place a variety of attachments on implants that fit or lock into the under side of denture to stop it from moving around. There are lots of types of attachments but they basically come in 2 categories – studs and bars. Studs offer the advantages of simplicity, ease of maintenance and lower cost, while bars provide more stability and can allow the omission of a palate on an upper denture. For both of these options, the denture is still removed from the mouth for cleaning and overnight. The choice of bar versus stud attachment is based on a number of factors which will always be thoroughly assessed before starting treatment
If I have no teeth is there any way I can have something fixed in my mouth that I don’t have to take out?
Yes this is possible in some cases and is a very commonly requested treatment. The restoration that achieves this is often called a hybrid bridge. It is essentially a complete denture with a strong, internal, metallic supporting core that is connected by screws directly onto implants buried in the gum. There is no palate, no flange wrapping up around the gum and no requirement to take the restoration out at night. It is often a great option for patients who have never worn a complete denture before but that are going lose their remaining natural teeth over a short period of time. In cases where patients have had complete dentures for a long time, a removable denture supported on implant studs or an implant bar is commonly a more satisfactory option.
Can I have all of my teeth extracted and get new fixed implant replacements in the same day?
It is theoretically possible to do this in some cases. We do provide this type of treatment but only in specific circumstances where the risk of implant or restoration failure is low. Fixed implant restorations with a metal supporting structure are long-term restorations that require detailed planning and careful fabrication. We always aim to provide patients with high quality predictable implant treatments in the shortest possible time that is safe. But we never rush implant treatment. The correction of implant work that has failed due to poor planning or inappropriately quick execution is often more time consuming, unpleasant and expensive in the long run than taking the time to do it more patiently in the first instance.