What are Dentures

Dentures serve as removable replacements for missing teeth and come in two major types: full dentures and partial dentures. Full dentures cover the entire roof of the mouth (upper denture) and have a horseshoe shape for the lower jaw, while partial dentures attach to natural teeth via a framework.

Full dentures can be conventional or immediate. Conventional dentures are placed after teeth removal, allowing time for gum healing, while immediate dentures are placed immediately after tooth extraction. Partial dentures are removable alternatives to bridges.

Adapting to dentures may take weeks or months, during which eating and speaking comfortably may be challenging. Dentures undergo wear and tear and may need relining or replacement over time. Proper care includes handling delicately, regular cleaning, and avoiding self-repair attempts.

Dental implants, on the other hand, are metal posts or frames surgically placed into the jawbone, serving as stable supports for artificial teeth, bridges, or dentures. Implants fuse with the jawbone in a process called osseointegration, ensuring stability and durability.

Two main types of implants include endosteal implants, placed directly into the bone, and subperiosteal implants, suitable for people with limited jawbone structure. Intramucosal inserts are used with removable dentures.

Implant placement typically involves an oral surgeon or periodontist for implant placement and a prosthodontist or general dentist for crown, bridge, or denture placement. Considerations before implant placement include healthy gums, sufficient jawbone, and the need for bone grafting or augmentation.

Implant placement requires two surgeries. During the first surgery, implants are placed into the gums and allowed to fuse with the jawbone. The second surgery involves placing healing abutments to facilitate gum healing. Restoration with crowns, bridges, or dentures occurs after healing.

Possible complications of implant surgery include bleeding, infection, and injury to nerves, sinuses, or nasal passages. Implant failure may result from trauma, infection, smoking, lack of healthy bone, or allergy to titanium. Late complications include periimplantitis and implant fracture, which may necessitate removal or repair.