I’ve had dentures for a little over twelve years. I’m finally in a financial place where I can get dental implants. Is it too late for me or is it still a possibility? Are there any extra steps I need to take to make it possible?
You can get dental implants regardless of how long you have had dentures. However, as you suspected, there is a procedure you’ll likely need before that is able to move forward.
When your teeth were removed, your body recognized that. In an effort to be as efficient as possible, it begins to resorb the minerals from your jawbone to use elsewhere in your body. After ten or so years, you are dealing with facial collapse and will start to find it difficult to even keep your dentures in place.
What you’ll need to do in order for this to work for you is to have a bone grafting procedure done. This will build back up the missing bone structure. Once that happens, you are ready to start your dental implant procedure. In your case, because you have complete removable dentures, you’ll get what is known as implant overdentures. This will place four to six dental implants and then anchor your dentures to them.
One thing to be sure of is that your dentist is experienced in placing dental implants. They’ll need to have had adequate post-doctoral training in this procedure. Don’t just go to any dentist. One other thing to be careful with is dentist/oral surgeon relationship. In Dr. Cheeks’ case, she works with a periodontist and oral surgeon on-site.
What you don’t want to do is go to the oral surgeon first without consulting with the implant dentist. If you do, it is possible the implants will be placed in the wrong place and you’ll end up with a dental implant horror story.
The great thing about a new smile procedure is it gives you a chance to obtain a smile you will be proud of for years to come. It will be helpful to take a peek at the smile gallery of whichever dentist you are planning to use, just to make certain they know how to create beautiful smiles.
This blog is brought to you by East Cobb Dentist Dr. Cristi Cheek.