If you are missing most or all of your teeth, you might be wondering about the available options for replacing them. You may have heard of dentures, which are removable artificial teeth that rest on your gums. But did you know that there is another type of denture that is more stable, comfortable, and natural-looking? It's called an overdenture, and it is supported by dental implants that are inserted into your jawbone.
Here is a bit of information about overdentures and how they are fitted.
What Are Overdentures?
Overdentures are dental prosthetics that replace missing teeth and some of the tooth roots. They consist of a base made of pink resin and metal that holds the artificial teeth, along with attachments that connect the base to the dental implants.
An implant is a titanium screw or rod that the dentist inserts into your jawbone, where it fuses with the bone to take the place of missing tooth roots. Implants provide a solid foundation for an overdenture and prevent bone loss that can occur when teeth are missing.
Overdentures can be either fixed or removable, depending on the type and number of implants and attachments used. Fixed overdentures are secured with screws and can only be removed by a dentist. Removable overdentures can be snapped on and off of the implants by the patient.
How Are Overdentures Fitted?
The process of getting overdentures usually involves several steps and appointments. Here is a general overview of what to expect:
- First, your dentist will take impressions of your mouth and make a set of temporary dentures for you to wear while your implants heal.
- Next, your dentist will use imaging techniques to plan the optimal location and angle of the implants. You may need to have some teeth extracted or bone grafting done before the implant surgery.
- Then, your dentist will perform the implant surgery, which involves making small incisions in your gums and drilling holes in your jawbone to insert the implants. You will be given local or general anesthesia to make you comfortable during the procedure.
- After the surgery, you will need to wait for several weeks or months for the implants to fuse with the bone. During this time, you will wear your temporary dentures and follow your dentist's instructions on how to care for your mouth.
- Once the implants are healed, your dentist will attach abutments to them, which are connectors that hold the overdenture in place. Your dentist will then take new impressions of your mouth to make your final overdenture.
- Finally, your dentist will fit and adjust your overdenture to ensure a comfortable and functional bite. You will also learn how to insert and remove your overdenture if it is removable.
To learn more about overdentures, schedule a consultation with a dentist in your local area.