New technique not only helps dentures stay snug, but also helps bone structure stay healthy
To many denture wearers, false teeth can be a hassle.
Chewing puts pressure on the gums. Adhesives are required to keep the teeth set. Over time, that set of dentures doesn’t fit like it used to.
There are health concerns regarding dentures too. According to Dr. Michelle Reynolds of Tooth Ferry Dental Office on Court Street, using our teeth helps the bone they are rooted in stay strong. Biting and chewing produce physical stimulation of each and every root structure, which in turn stimulates the immediate bone material that the root is attached to.
When an adult tooth is removed and not replaced, bone stimulation ceases for that particular site. There is no direct stimulation of jaw bone material and the underlying bone structure slowly resorbs, or breaks down. That’s why the fit of those dentures changes.
Reynolds is using a new technique that not only helps dentures stay snug, but also helps the denture wearer’s bone structure stay healthy.
Reynolds inserts mini-implants onto which dentures snap. The benefits: Dentures stay in place without adhesives and can be easily removed for cleaning or before sleep. The pressure from activities like chewing goes into the implant, relieving pressure on gum tissue and stimulating the immediate bone material.
And mini-implants cost about 70-75 percent less than dental implants, replacement tooth roots that provide a strong foundation for permanent or removable replacement teeth that are made to match your natural teeth.
Mini-implants can also be used for bridges.
“You don’t feel the tension on the tissue, and you have more chewing ability,” Reynolds said of mini implants. “You have about 20 percent of your chewing ability with dentures. With mini implants, it’s improved beyond that.”
Reynolds said getting mini implants is easy: First, consultation. Second, an appointment for the procedure, which takes about an hour.
You may have a problem if you smoke, have uncontrolled diabetes or periodontal disease.
“I always tell my patients not to smoke,” Reynolds said.