“A smile speaks a thousand words” is a popular adage used around the world and generally will elicit a lightbulb moment of “How true”. However, for anyone who has experience with dentures this saying is either a positive reinforcement of the benefits associated with dentures or – in many cases – a negative reminder of the frustration and complications associated with dentures.
What is a denture?
The dictionary tells us that a denture is: “…a removable plate or frame holding one or more artificial teeth”. Simply put, dentures are customised replacement artificial teeth that can be put in the mouth and taken out when necessary. A seemingly straightforward concept, although one that should be looked at carefully in order to find the best “fit” for the individual. When correctly made and used, dentures allow clients to feel confident with their smile and also assist in eating and speaking more comfortably.
When do you need dentures?
Although there are a myriad of indicators that dentures are required, a few important ones include:
- Loose or wobbly teeth and visible gaps getting bigger between your teeth
- Discomfort in trying to chew hard foods
- Indigestion – this can actually occur as a result of needing dentures as we automatically avoid chewing in uncomfortable areas of our mouth and swallow bigger pieces of food, leading to complications in our gastrointestinal tract.
At Elmsleigh House we have extensive experience in dealing with patients with missing teeth. Whether it is one tooth or multiple teeth, a gap in a smile is not just aesthetically unpleasing but it also can result in discomfort while eating as well as impacting on the remaining teeth in the area of the tooth loss.
Main problem of wearing dentures
Dentures should be customized to fit the individual; however, a prevalent problem among those with dentures is in fact an ill-fitting denture that creates pain and discomfort. Correctly fitted dentures should not move around and slide over the gums, which can cause gum sores and swelling as a result, making wearing dentures impossible. In some cases, due to ill-fitting dentures that move about, patients develop a callous on their gums called an Epulis, which has to be removed surgically.
With this in mind there has been an urgent call for a fail-proof method of securely stabilising dentures within the mouth, which is where dental stabilisation has revolutionised the thinking towards denture fitting, care and comfort.
What is denture stabilisation with implants?
At Elmsleigh House our expert team of practitioners confidently use a method called denture stabilisation in order to combat the potential risks of ill-fitting dentures. In layman’s terms, a dental implant is inserted into the jaw (this implant is a small titanium screw) and your denture is attached to this implant. These implants not only hold your denture securely but they also support neighbouring teeth as well as the underlying jaw bone
The attachment between the artificial tooth and the implant is completely secure. In lower denture stabilisation, generally two dental implants are placed at the front of the lower jaw. For those dealing with upper denture movement, three to four dental implants are used. A special connector is used to securely attach each implant to the denture it is anchoring.
Main benefits of denture stabilisation with implants
Common problems experienced by clients using the traditional method of affixing their dentures in place include: messy denture adhesives, uncomfortable gums and chewing sensitivity (which naturally develops in the effort to not irritate a moving denture).
Through denture stabilisation with implants, clients no longer have to rely on a denture adhesive to keep their dentures in place and do not experience the painful rubbing of loose dentures against the gums. From smiling confidently to eating comfortably, this procedure is incredibly effective and less costly as clients have no need to continually purchase stabilisation aids or have new dentures fitted.
How to know if you can get denture stabilisation
Although we live in a world where self-diagnosis has become increasingly popular and easy to do through the internet, it is of utmost importance that clients are starting off accurately on their journey to great denture health. Numerous articles provide the general research and information that covers the need for dentures, how they work, what the options are and the cost involved. However, we believe that our responsibility at Elmsleigh House is to ensure that clients have the opportunity to explain their concerns and desired outcomes while we can closely observe and investigate the possibility of denture stabilisation for each client on an individual basis. With comprehensive care in mind, it is advisable to make an appointment with one of our team to find out if you should consider this option.
In a research conducted by the Oral Health Foundation, it was found that in keeping with the age-old oral health tradition of putting off a dentist appointment, close to half of the adult population dread visiting the dentist and some even experience what is known as “extreme dental anxiety”.
At Elmsleigh House we strive to drastically change this perception as we take a journey with each of our clients in choosing their best and most effective denture care option and work together to create happier, brighter and more confident smiles.