How Many Implants Are Needed For Upper Dentures?

August 13, 2021Article

If you are missing one or more teeth, it’s important that you talk to your dentist about options for tooth-replacement right away. 

The space left behind by missing teeth can cause your remaining teeth to shift out of alignment, causing bite problems and other oral health complications, including jawbone deterioration.  As the jawbone deteriorates, the face changes shape, leaving you unrecognizable to yourself and others. The sooner you replace your missing teeth, the better you’ll be able to preserve your smile and your oral health. If you’re in need of a full arch of missing teeth, implant-supported dentures are one of the options your dentist may recommend. Unlike traditional dentures, which tend to slide around at inopportune moments, implant-supported dentures stay in place. Not only will they restore your smile and your ability to chew the foods you love, but they can also help keep your jawbone healthy and preserve your facial structure. Here’s how they work.  

 

How do implant-supported dentures work?

Implant-supported dentures combine some of the best features of two modern dental prosthetics: traditional dentures and standard dental implants. The process begins with the surgical insertion of titanium screws into the patient’s jawbone. These screws perform the function of the tooth root, or anchor, and over time, they fuse to the jawbone through a process called “osseointegration.” Once this is complete and the titanium screw is sufficiently stable (a process that takes months), it is time for the next step.

In a standard dental implant, a single prosthetic tooth is then attached to the screw with an abutment piece. But with implant-supported dentures, rather than replacing each tooth with an implant, four to six implants are inserted, and a customized arch of prosthetic teeth is attached to the implants. Implant-supported dentures can be snapped on and off for cleaning, but they won’t shift in your mouth when you speak or eat. They are durable and stable, and they look, feel, and function like natural teeth. 

 

How many implants are needed for upper dentures?

Implant-supported dentures can be used to replace an upper arch, a lower arch, or both. The number of implants needed for each arch depends mainly on the health of the patient’s jawbone.  If a patient has insufficient jawbone to support the implants, a bone graft may be necessary before the implants can be inserted. If the patient has enough bone volume to accommodate the implants, they will need between four and eight implants for the upper dentures. 

The upper jaw is less dense than the lower jaw. For this reason, more implants are usually needed for the upper jaw. While two implants are sometimes sufficient for the lower dentures, the upper jaw requires a minimum of four implants. Depending on the available amount of bone in the upper jaw, as well as the bite force of the patient, as many as six or eight implants may be needed to ensure stability of the denture. Your dentist will perform an oral examination, x-rays, and other tests to determine whether you have sufficient jawbone and how many implants are needed to support your dentures. 

 

Benefits of implant-supported dentures

If missing or decayed teeth have caused you to hide your smile, or if standard dentures have caused you discomfort, implant-supported dentures will be life-changing. Benefits of implant-supported dentures include:

  • Improved ability to chew and smile
  • Sturdy, without need for adhesive
  • Easy to clean
  • Preserves gum tissue
  • Promotes jawbone health
  • Preserves facial structure

 

The elimination of the anxiety and discomfort alone will give you something to smile about, but when you add up all the other benefits, getting implant-supported dentures becomes a no-brainer!

 

Missing teeth? Schedule an appointment with Dr. Pegah Salami today!

If you live in North County San Diego and you’re looking for a compassionate and highly experienced dentist, you’ve come to the right place. Dr. Pegah Salami specializes in advanced dentistry procedures and uses cutting-edge technology to provide her patients with the very best in dental care. Dr. Salami is passionate about helping her patients achieve optimum oral health, and she’ll help keep you comfortable every step of the way. Dentures Escondido

 

Dr. Pegah Salami is an orthodontist, cosmetic dentist, sedation dentist, and Invisalign specialist. Her office is located in Rancho Bernardo and serving San Diego County. Dr. Salami is a member of several prestigious dental organizations.