How Long Do Overdentures Last

How Long Do Overdentures Last?

Overdentures refer to dentures that are secured to dental implants in your jawbone. As opposed to traditional dentures, overdentures cover but do not sit upon your gums. While traditional or conventional dentures are a great option for some patients, there are many drawbacks associated with them that are solved by the more modern implant supported overdentures. While some overdentures are removable at home just like conventional dentures, others can only be removed by a dental professional.

Snap-on overdentures are a great option for patients that need to replace a full arch of teeth. They are secured to dental implants fused directly to the jawbone and provide great stability, durability, and function. Further, overdentures are far more comfortable than conventional dentures because they sit on the implants and do not come into direct contact with the gums. This prevents gum irritation and also allows for a natural bite which helps to keep the jawbone healthy.

How Often Do Snap-On Overdentures Need to Be Replaced?

While the answer is different for every patient, the prosthetic teeth themselves generally last between 10 and 15 years. Depending on the amount and level of daily maintenance a patient is capable of providing, the prosthesis can outlast that estimation. The most common material for prosthetic teeth is porcelain, which is extremely strong but is brittle and prone to chipping or cracking as well as discoloration. The risks of these flaws increase over time and are eventually inevitable, requiring the manufacture of new overdentures.

The dental implants themselves are often permanent. With proper hygiene and regular professional cleanings to prevent infection, the titanium screws will last a lifetime.

Snap-On overdentures are attached to the dental implant with plastic or metal snaps. A proper hygiene regimen requires the patient to remove the overdenture every night to brush the prosthetic and irrigate the underlying gums with a water flosser. With the repeated snapping on and off due to daily maintenance, the attachment can become worn. This results in a diminished snap retention and the perception of looseness while wearing the overdenture.

The snapping attachments typically need to be replaced every 12 to 18 months. Regular checkups will allow the dentist to monitor the condition of the attachments and help to determine when replacement is necessary. The replacement can often be completed during cleaning appointments. As with any other maintenance procedure, there will be costs associated with replacing a part or all of the prosthesis.

Another factor in how long the prosthetic will last is the changes that occur in the mouth as a result of having the overdenture covering the gums. The soft tissues that make up the gums are malleable and any prosthetic that comes into contact with the gums will change their form. Because of this change, readjustments are likely to be necessary every once in a while. A realignment of the implants and implant retained overdenture will often need to be done every 3 to 5 years in order to maintain a proper and comfortable fit.