The Difference Between Implant Retained Overdenture and Implant Supported Overdenture

The Difference Between Implant Retained Overdenture and Implant Supported Overdenture

For patients who are missing or need a full arch of teeth replaced, dentures are the best solution. There are a variety of denture types, however, and the correct choice may be hard to arrive at. While it is best to consult with your dental professional, here is a quick look at the differences between implant retained dentures and implant supported dentures.

What Are Traditional Dentures?

Traditional dentures have been the go-to treatment for missing teeth for centuries. By the early 1800s they were very commonplace among relatively well-to-do patients. These early dentures were somewhat uncomfortable and did not always mimic the look of natural teeth.

By the 20th century, dental technology had advanced enough that mass-produced dentures could be made both more well-fitting and natural looking. Unfortunately, the nature of these prostheses leaves much to be desired. Since they rest on top of your gums, they can irritate the softer tissues underneath. They are prone to slipping or falling out and do not allow for a natural bite, reducing chewing ability and allowing for atrophy of the jawbone.

Implant Supported vs. Implant Retained Overdentures

While both implant retained and implant supported overdentures rely on dental implants for stability, there are some differences between the two. Both provide much more stability and improved durability and functionality over traditional dentures. The dental implants also have the added benefit of stimulating the jawbone during biting and chewing, inhibiting the deterioration that can occur when teeth do not contact each other.

The largest difference between implant supported and implant retained dentures is the amount of maintenance required. Implant retained dentures, while closely resembling natural teeth, require a fair amount more daily maintenance. They must be taken out each night and cleaned thoroughly. It is advised to use a soft bristled toothbrush to clean the porcelain and a water flosser to clean the underlying gum tissue and implant roots. Retained dentures cannot be slept in.

Implant supported dentures can be maintained much like natural teeth. Brushing twice a day and flossing are paramount, as is using a water flosser to clean the plaque and leftover bits of food from under the prosthetic. Implant supported dentures can be removed by a dental professional during checkups for deep cleanings, but cannot be removed at home.

The other most significant factors while making the choice between supported and retained dentures are how intense the procedure is and the costs associated. While daily maintenance of implant supported dentures is far less extreme, they generally cost more and require a more lengthy placement procedure. Implant supported dentures are also more stable and durable, and allow for a more forceful bite.

Whichever option you choose, implant dentures will restore the form and function of your natural smile. They are both far more comfortable than traditional dentures and prevent the jawbone atrophy associated with partial or full arch dentures. Both are stable, require no foul-tasting adhesives, and will not fall or slip out while chewing or talking. Implant supported or retained dentures will greatly improve your rightful sense of confidence from having a new, natural-looking smile!