Getting dentures isn’t necessarily a rite of passage into your golden years. But even with the development of dental implants, Dentures in Long Beach are still frequently used for replacing missing teeth. However, there’s a hidden secret that often accompanies the wearing of a removable prosthesis: bone loss. Treatment near you with our dentist in Long Beach will include a comprehensive approach that balances optimal oral health with a customized smile reconstruction plan.
How are Dentures Linked to Bone Loss?
Bone loss is a natural consequence of tooth loss. So once teeth fall out or are extracted, the jaw begins to shrink. This resorption process can cause your jaws to look “short”, collapse your facial profile, or make your lips and cheeks seem sunken in. If your denture is designed by an experienced dentist, it can be fitted in a way that restores volume and depth to your profile, helping to re-create the loss of fullness in your face.
Sleeping in your dentures is one of the most common mistakes that denture-wearers make. By failing to remove their prosthesis individuals not only put themselves at risk for an oral infection, but they also raise their chances of denture-induced bone loss. This structural shrinkage of their jaw is caused by the ongoing pressure of the appliance against their mouth. If worn correctly (and removed each night before going to bed) bone loss can be delayed.
Changes in Denture Fit Over Time
Since it’s natural to expect some changes in your bone over the years (especially after teeth extractions or wearing dentures) you will want to plan semi-regular denture adjustments. Mild bone shrinking here and there will also change the contour of the overlying gum tissue. As those things happen, the denture you’re wearing will start to feel loose. Rocking, slipping, or rubbing are common. Not only is this dilemma uncomfortable but it can also make everyday things like eating or talking a bit challenging.
By having your denture routinely inspected, occasionally adjusted, or potentially re-lined, you can recreate a secure fit that sits comfortably against your gum tissues to create a seal. After several years the acrylic can start to wear out and a reline may not be the best option. In that case, you’ll want to plan to go ahead and update your denture with a new one.
What are Other Causes of Bone Loss?
Periodontal disease and tooth extraction in Long Beach also initiate bone loss in the immediate area around those teeth. Any time there is an active disease or a tooth is removed, the adjacent bone begins to resorb or shrink away.
Being proactive in your treatment can help delay bone loss, if not prevent it. For instance, early periodontal therapy or placing a dental implant immediately after extracting a tooth is both effective bone-healthy ways to restore your smile.
Alternatives to Dentures
Although dentures are still an excellent option for many people, you may be curious about whether there is a “better” alternative available. If you want to avoid having a prosthesis rest directly on your gums and rely on suction, dental implants are an excellent substitute. Implants trigger healthy bone where they are installed, helping you maintain a full facial profile and delay bone loss.
Implants can be used to support a variety of tooth replacement restorations, including bridges, removable over dentures, and full-arch hybrid denture designs. It’s like the best of both worlds!
Dentures in Long Beach
Our dentist in Long Beach provides tailored dentures, partial dentures, and dental implant services. If you’re struggling with tooth and bone loss, treatment near you is just a call away. Contact us today to reserve a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Campbell.