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Whangarei Dental Overdentures



What is an overdenture?

An overdenture is an upper or lower complete denture that is supported by tooth roots or implants. Overdentures can be placed on the upper and/or lower jaw. Most denture wearers find that a lower overdenture dramatically changes their lives with renewed confidence and the ability to chew foods they could not eat with regular complete dentures.

The tooth root or implant has a snap system placed that engages receptacles imbedded in the denture that provide stability. Chewing and confidence is enhanced by the stability provided by the connection of the denture to the roots or implants beneath. Overdentures are removable to allow cleaning.

Are overdentures better than regular dentures?

Overdentures are extremely superior to normal dentures. Confidence, as well as improved chewing, are the main benefits of an overdenture versus a normal denture. In addition, the shape of the jaw under the overdenture is preserved by the presence of remaining teeth or implants.

Normally, a complete denture basically “floats” over the gums beneath, which provides some stability. However, most denture users find that dentures are just not the same as natural teeth. Although the upper denture can “suction” against the roof of the mouth, lower dentures just sit there without any means of anchoring them to the gums below.

Overdentures can be placed on the upper and/or lower jaw. If you have no remaining teeth, implants can be inserted to provide stability for your overdenture. Overdentures are removable, which allow you to clean the support implants or tooth roots.

If you suffer from dentures that dislodge easily or find chewing with dentures difficult, ask about overdentures to drastically improve your life.

Can my existing denture be made into an overdenture?

The short answer is yes, in most cases. If your existing denture is relatively new, without a large space between the gum and denture, then it can most likely be made into an overdenture. This will require the placement of 2-4 implants which will support the overdenture.

The placement of implants requires sufficient bone in order for the implants to be placed. A special X-ray, called a 3 dimensional X-ray, or CBCT (Cone Beam Computerised Tomography), is taken of the area and evaluated for sufficient bone. Once sufficient bone is determined, implants can be placed and secured to your overdenture usually on the same day!

What supports an overdenture?

Overdentures are supported by either dental implants or the roots of natural teeth or a combination of both. If no solid teeth are present when considering overdentures, the placement of implants is necessary to support an overdenture. Part of the overdenture attachment system will be screwed into the implant which will snap into a component placed in the overdenture. A minimum of two supporting elements are required for an overdenture. The more supports, the more secure the overdenture will be.

If there are remaining teeth with solid root structure, they can be used to support an overdenture. The roots of the natural teeth must first be treated with root canal therapy and then a part of the overdenture attachment system is cemented into the root, which will snap into a component placed in the overdenture.

What is an “All-on-4®” overdenture?

The “All-on-4®” overdenture is a term used to describe all teeth placed on four implants in total. The All-on-4® overdenture gives patients with no teeth an economical method of having teeth again! Once implants are placed, a special overdenture is made with components embedded in the body of the overdenture that are securely screwed into the underlying implants. Many times the All-on-4® overdenture can be attached to implants placed, all on the same day!

Are All-on-4® overdentures permanent?

Unlike most overdentures, the All-on-4® overdenture is not removable by the wearer. It can be removed by a dentist, however, for maintenance or repair if needed. The renewed confidence restored by the All-on-4® technique is astounding!

How do you clean an All-on-4® denture?

The All-on-4® overdenture has a space between the gums and the overdenture to allow cleaning with little brushes and dental floss. Since you can barely see the implants under the overdenture, it is necessary for your dentist to periodically remove the All-on-4® denture to examine the implants and to give them a thorough clean. The dentist can then advise you on areas you might be missing during your home care regime.