Full dentures replace all of the teeth in your mouth when the natural teeth were lost to trauma, decay, or a combination of factors. Full dentures come in two different styles: implant-retained or gum-supported. The former offers some more pros than traditional gum-supported dentures – but also comes with a con.

What are some of the pros and cons of implant-retained dentures you should discuss with your cosmetic dentist or denturist?

Pro: Advanced Support and Comfort

Implant-retained dentures have the same number of artificial teeth affixed to a rigid plate. But instead of straddling the gum covered jawbone ridge like gum-supported dentures, the implant-retained dentures snap onto a series of dental implant roots.

Your dentist will insert the implant roots into drilled wells within your jawbone, which will fuse around the root. The placement and bone healing will offer greater stability for the plate of artificial teeth than the jawbone ridge alone could provide. The stability means the plate won't slide around while you chew, which causes discomfort and soft tissue abrasions. You also don't have to worry about the plate falling out when you sneeze or similarly jostle your mouth.

Pro: Jawbone Health Promotion

Natural teeth have roots that provide gentle, constant friction to the surrounding jawbone and that friction promotes jawbone health. Loss of natural teeth can quickly lead to bone deterioration due to the lack of friction. Jawbone loss can cause pain, change the shape of your mouth, and make it more difficult for a dentist to place either type of denture.

But only implant-retained dentures can restore the friction to promote your jawbone back to good health. If your bone has already deteriorated significantly, the dentist might first have to perform a bone graft. The graft will bolster the existing bone with donor bone so that there is sufficient material to heal around the dental implant roots.

Con: Extended Treatment Time

The implant-retained dentures require you to undergo a longer treatment time since you will need to wait for the jawbone to heal around the metal implant roots before your dentist can install the dentures. Traditional dentures have a bit of wait time as the plates are constructed at the lab, but you will overall receive your dentures far faster than with implant-retained dentures.

If you do decide to go the implant-retained denture route, your dentist might provide you with some temporary traditional dentures so that you don't have a toothless smile while you wait for the bone to heal. 

For more information, contact professionals at places like Milner Dentistry.