Implant-supported dentures are a popular solution when replacing a complete arch of upper or lower teeth. The prosthesis is removable, clipping onto dental implants directly or onto a special bar fitted onto the implants. Once the implant denture is in place, it improves biting and chewing strength compared to an ordinary denture. It is very stable and cannot move around, eliminating the risk of painful sore spots on the gums or embarrassing accidents when eating and talking with others. There is also no need to use denture adhesives.
The cost of implant-supported dentures depends on various factors, including the following:
Any preparatory procedures
Number of dental implants
Before implant treatment, you must have some diagnostic tests, including digital dental x-rays and a cone beam CT scan. Digital dental x-rays are typically inexpensive, although a cone beam CT scan costs a bit more as it provides 3-D images of teeth and jaws. These tests are necessary and perfectly safe and enable us to assess your dental health closely and plan treatment accurately. They are also used to place your dental implants using computer-guided surgery.
When you first visit Riverside Oral Surgery, we will assess your oral health and determine if any preparatory procedures are needed before fitting an implant-supported denture. These preparations can depend on whether you have any existing natural teeth that need removal or oral infections that must be treated before implant surgery.
If you lost teeth many years ago and have bone loss in your jaw, or periodontal or gum disease has destroyed your jawbone, then you might need bone and possibly gum grafting before implant surgery. Restoring missing bone ensures that your implants will have plenty of strong and healthy bone with which to bond and that implant treatment will be more successful.
Some people feel entirely comfortable using local anesthesia to numb their mouth during implant surgery. Others prefer to have additional sedation, especially if they need several dental implants placed, need lengthier or more complicated treatment, or feel anxious about the thought of oral surgery. Sedation dentistry can increase the overall cost of implant treatment but can be well worth it for peace of mind and comfort.
Number of Dental Implants
Some implant-supported dentures can be supported by as few as two or four dental implants. The number required depends on the number of teeth to be replaced and whether you wish to have an upper or lower implant-supported denture.
Usually, a lower implant-supported denture will require fewer dental implants for good support. This is because the lower jawbone tends to be stronger than the upper jawbone. Your upper jawbone is close to the sinus cavities, just above your upper back teeth. The bone here is naturally thinner and weaker and, depending on the implant treatment chosen, may be less able to support dental implants fully.
We will always suggest the number of dental implants we know will provide optimal long-term results. It is far preferable to place more dental implants initially and achieve strong, stable dental implants that can support your implant denture properly.
During your initial consultation, we can discuss the different types of dental implants available to secure dentures. Options include traditional full-sized dental implants that provide strong support for dentures.
Mini dental implants are narrower and ideal in specific circumstances, such as when there might not be so much strong and healthy bone available for implant support. They also require a different surgical procedure to insert them, as they are placed directly through the gum and into the bone, so fewer incisions are needed. This technique could be preferable for some people.
Traditional dental implants cost more than mini dental implants but might be a better long-term option, depending on your circumstances. If you are suitable for both types, we can discuss the pros and cons of each and the associated costs in detail, helping you make the right decision.
The quality of materials used to fabricate implant-supported dentures can vary considerably. Some are more durable and lifelike and can mimic the natural appearance of gums and teeth more accurately than others. A huge range of denture teeth is available, and the costs can vary.
It is your choice, but spending a little more on higher-quality materials that will last longer, look better, and increase overall satisfaction with the final treatment results can be better. We can show you examples of each material and different denture teeth that might suit you so you can choose the best options for your needs and budget.
Understanding the Costs of an Implant-Supported Denture
Once we have completed diagnostic tests, we can provide a complete breakdown of all the costs involved. We will review these costs with you and explain why each procedure is recommended or necessary, if there are any alternative options, and what results you can expect to achieve.
If you have dental insurance, some of these costs are almost certainly covered. Insurance policies increasingly recognize the value of implant treatment to dental health and no longer regard it as a cosmetic dental procedure.
If you do not have dental insurance, low or no interest repayment plans are available for patients who qualify, enabling you to have this treatment affordably straightaway and to gain the benefits of having teeth that remain firmly in place all day long.