Today, we can provide our patients with denture options that will greatly increase their comfort, feel and function. Traditional dentures were never known to be comfortable, and they provided necessary though very limited function, with the addition of dental implants, we can help them feel much more natural. Our team at Southern Arizona Periodontics can help you have dentures that will stay in place while providing you with the firm feeling that your natural teeth once did.
How Bar Retained Dentures Work
A bar retained denture uses surgically placed implants in conjunction with a thin metal bar designed to follow the curve of your jaw. The bar is attached to at least two, and up to six dental implants, the patient then fits the denture over the bar and clips the denture to it.
Dental implants come in both metal and ceramic material, they are a post that closely resembles a screw in size and shape. We place the threaded end into the jaw bone where it will heal and fuse with the bone. Once healed, the implanted posts are now firm anchors in your mouth to securely hold your denture permanently in place. They will provide the stabilization to prevent rocking, coming loose, decreasing discomfort, increasing function and most importantly provide you the security that they will stay in place causing you less social anxiety.
The Process for Bar Retained Dentures
The process of placing a bar retained denture begins with the implant. Many implant procedures require first bulking up the bone through a bone graft, but most patients will not require this step when having dentures retained because we use longer implants designed to reach the denser bone.
Immediately following the implant placement surgery, we place healing caps over the implants, the patient will see them protruding slightly above the gum. After about two weeks of healing, we can remove the small stitches. If the patient is wearing an existing lower denture, we will modify and reline the denture with soft material so the patient can wear it comfortably while the implants integrate and heal for approximately three months.
Once the implants are firmly integrated, we can then customize the bar. The bar, designed to match your inner lower jaw curvature, is retained to the lower implants. The bar cannot be removed by the patient; please contact our office if you are finding it to be uncomfortable for any reason. The bar, like the denture, will need to be brushed and cleaned daily. The denture is placed over the bar and secured in place; if placed correctly, the denture should have a great deal of retention and stability.
We can help you find much greater comfort with your denture. There are so many benefits that come with retaining your denture with implants. Bar-retained dentures allow a patient significantly better chewing ability, allowing the patient to resume their regular diet, as well as improve their speech. Additionally, implant retained dentures help the patient retain a fuller looking face, maintaining a more beautiful look.