July 2013

Implant Supported Dentures

Implant Supported Dentures

Millions of people have experienced the benefits of implant-supported dentures.  In fact, dental implants continue to be one of the most desired dental procedures based on their ability to increase chewing efficiency, reduce bone loss and improve facial esthetics and quality of life.  For more than 30 years, implant supported dentures have improved the quality of life of patients.

An implant-supported denture differs from a regular denture in that it is attached to a cover screw that has been placed in the bon of the jaw.  A more traditional denture rests on the gums.  When patients lose teeth, surrounding bone in the jaw shrinks, causing facial structure alternations.  Implants inserted directly into the jaw help to keep those bones from shrinking. -the implant fills the gap that the roots previously occupied.  The dentures are fastened to the implant, providing a much more secure attachment.

What are the different types of implant-supported dentures?

Bar-retained:  A thin metal bar is attached in two to five areas to follow the curve of the jawbone.  Attachments are fitted to the bar and securely clipped into place

Ball-retained:  Also know as stud-attached dentures, each is fitted and attached to an implant that is placed in the jawbone.  In most cases a ball-shaped attachment is fitted into a “socket” on the denture

How stable are implant-supported dentures?

Implant-supported dentures are more stable than a regular denture.  It is easier to speak and the worry of the denture coming loose or falling out is eliminated

Are patients happy with the result?

Patients report improved function, comfort and much greater satisfaction with implant overdentures than with traditional dentures.

What causes Dry Mouth? (Xerostomia)

What causes Dry Mouth? (Xerostomia)

We all need saliva to moisten and cleanse our mouths, keep bacteria under control and to help us digest our food properly.  If we don’t produce enough saliva, we experience a dry mouth, which can be uncomfortable.  It is normal to experience a dry mouth occasionally, but if it becomes a frequent chronic problem then something may be an underlying cause.   There are several causes for dry mouth, also know in medical terms as Xerostomia.  Causes range from:

  • A side effect from prescription and non-prescription drugs used to treat everything from depression and anxiety, colds and allergies, acne, diarrhea and asthma.
  • A side effect of certain diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, Sjogren’s syndrome and Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • A side effect of muscle relaxants and sedatives
  • A side effect for medical treatments that may have damaged the salivary glands, such as radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
  • Dehydration from excessive sweating, fever, blood loss or burns

Besides being uncomfortable, dry mouth can lead to more serious problems, such as increasing a person’s risk of gingivitis and gum disease

Treatments include:

  • Drink more water to keep you mouth moist
  • Suck on sugar free candy to help increase saliva
  • Protect your teeth by visiting your dentist regularly
  • Add moisture to your bedroom with a room vaporizer
  • use an artificial saliva substitute
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