I have had dentures for twenty years and have never liked my smile. I have the money for dental implants now and wondered if it is too late for me to get a beautiful smile with dental implants? I’m finding it difficult to keep my dentures in these days, so this seems like a good time to switch.
I have great news for you. It is never too late to have a beautiful smile. The key is choosing the dentist who does your dental implants carefully. You want someone who not only has extensive post-doctoral training in placing dental implants but is also a skilled cosmetic dentist. The cosmetic skill of the dentist matters much more than which procedure you get when it comes to how beautiful the results will be. For example, even your dentures could have looked beautiful and natural if the dentist who did them had invested in cosmetic dentistry training. The best cosmetic dentists are AACD accredited dentists. They will give you a stunning smile.
One other thing to be aware of is the length of time you have been in dentures. From the moment your teeth were removed, your body recognized that you no longer had any teeth there and immediately began to resorb the minerals in your jawbone in order to use them elsewhere in your body where it feels they will be most useful. While a remarkably efficient way to utilize your body’s resources, it also has the unfortunate side effect of shrinking your jawbone. After somewhere between ten and twenty years, your jaw will become so shrunken that you won’t be able to adequately keep them in, as you are currently experiencing yourself. This is known as facial collapse. Without that bone support, your jaw will not be able to retain your dental implants.
The good news is that there is a solution. You can have bone grafting done. This is an outpatient procedure which will build back up the lost bone. Once that is healed, you will be able to have your implants placed. When you are replacing a complete arch, it is standard (and much more affordable) to place implant overdentures. It would be cost-prohibitive to do a crown per tooth.
Aside from the security of implants, there are two other huge benefits. First, your quality of life will go up dramatically. One of the first things you may notice is your chewing capacity will increase. Even the best fitting dentures reduce your chewing capacity by 50%. Now, you’ll be able to eat whatever you want. The best benefit (at least in my opinion) is that you will no longer have to worry about facial collapse.
This blog is brought to you by Lexington, Ky Dentist Dr. Fred Arnold.