Full Arch Dental Implant Options
When it comes to replacing all teeth in a dental arch (upper, lower or both), there are several options available. Most people know about dentures, but often there are better, more advanced options available with the placement of dental implants. Dr. Jeff Wright has the training and experience needed to provide you with the most up-to-date implant options, customized to your situation. The best way to find out which option is best for you is to schedule a consultation appointment, including a cone beam 3D X-ray with Dr. Jeff to discuss your specific needs. Below is a summary of two ways to replace a full arch of teeth with dental implants.
Snap-On (Locator) Dentures
Snap-on Dentures look and feel like traditional, removable dentures. However, there are 2-4 locators on the under-side of your denture or “plate,” which attach on top of implant abutments. Snap-On Dentures are basically dentures that snap in place. There’s no rocking, shifting, or rubbing because your implants keep the appliance secure.
The Snap-On Denture can be removed each day for normal cleaning of the denture, soft tissues, and gums. The Snap-On Denture is ideal for someone with existing dentures that wants a more stable solution or someone looking for an economical option for the replacement of all teeth with dental implants.
Today’s dental implants are extremely durable. In fact, they can support more weight than natural teeth. At Wright & Wheeler Dentistry, we can use as few as four implants to support a full-arch prosthesis that mimics the appearance of an extended dental bridge.
Bridges are permanent restorations attached to teeth or implants, supporting pontic (false) crowns in the areas of missing teeth. When set on four implants, the All-on-Four hybrid denture spans across the gums from one side of your mouth to the other.
The biggest difference between an All-on-Four appliance and an overdenture is the way that it is shaped. As a permanent appliance, you never have to take it out. Additionally, All-on-Four treatments don’t cover the roof of your mouth.
Advantages of Full Arch Dental Implants
There are several different factors that impact the comfort of a denture or implant prosthesis. Some of the ones to consider include:
- Rubbing, chafing, and sore spots: Both Snap-On and All-on-Four dentures help to eliminate the source of sore spots. Since the denture doesn’t use your gums for a seal, there’s not a risk of it rubbing up against them. Not only is rubbing painful, but it’s also a common source of infection for denture wearers.
- Speech: Wearing a removable Snap-On denture can change the way you talk. Since there’s still an acrylic “plate” across the roof of your mouth, you’ll have to work on making specific speech sounds without slurring our sounding different. However, with an All-on-4 implant appliance, the shape follows the contour of your bite. That means your tongue and lips won’t have to re-learn how to speak.
- Eating: All-on-Four implants offer significant advantages over Snap-On dentures when it comes to eating. Since these hybrid denture/bridge designs do not cover the roof of your mouth, you get to enjoy the natural tastes of your meals and chew easier. Anything you would have eaten before losing your teeth (or wearing dentures) is no longer off limits!
- Confidence: There’s something to be said for the way your smile makes you feel. With an All-on-Four implant treatment, you can feel comfortable in your own skin. There’s no taking out an appliance when you go to bed at night or having to worry about the way you look when you’re laughing in front of friends. Everything is as it should be. You won’t have to worry about any awkward situations!
- Facial profile: Dentures can change the way you look. With implants, you’re naturally supporting the bone in your mouth, which consequently affects your facial profile. All-on-4 implants give you the fullness that counteracts “sunken-in” features seen in tooth loss. Your cheeks and lips are supported to add a more youthful look back to your face.
Contact Wright & Wheeler Dentistry to help determine which of these dental implant options is best for you!