A guide to dental implants for full-mouth tooth replacement: Makeover your smile and life!

Few oral conditions mar the smile’s appearance, like gaps where teeth used to be. Since the structure and health of your teeth are also vital for so many basic functions, tooth loss can have a tremendous, harmful effect on your overall health and well-being. Fortunately, VanderLaan Family Dentistry helps you to regain your confident appearance, comfortable and healthy function, and quality of life. Our team in Byron Center, Michigan, is trained and equipped with advanced technologies to safely and predictably design and place the gold standard in tooth replacement: prosthetics supported by dental implants.

About implant retained overdentures

Dental implants may retain or stabilize one prosthetic tooth, several prosthetic teeth, or a mouthful of replacement teeth (as an upper or lower denture(s)). After all, implants are placed in the jawbone and designed to replace the natural tooth root. Other forms of tooth replacement, such as conventional bridges and dentures, are only intended to replace the visible, white part of the tooth. They do not account for other portions of the tooth. Since the roots hold teeth in place, prosthetics made with implants are generally associated with utmost stability and natural and lasting function. Crowns, bridges, and dentures that are supported by implants also help to stop the destructive process of bone loss (resorption). 

The implants are made from biocompatible materials such as titanium, which means they are designed to join naturally to the surrounding bone. In other words, they become a part of the jaw. In addition to providing a secure foundation for the prosthetic teeth attached to them, dental implants keep the supportive bone in the jaw healthy and strong. The jawbone retains its strength due to its stimulation from the connected teeth. Every time you use your teeth to grind down or mash food, the force from that behavior is transmitted through the teeth to the roots encased in the jaw. To support the bony tissue in the jaw, it is essential to replace teeth quickly after they fall out or are removed. If teeth aren’t replaced promptly, the bone doesn’t have the stimulation it needs, and this tissue eventually deteriorates. Facial tissues no longer have adequate support to lay taut, resulting in saggy loose skin, pronounced folds, and a collapsed or prematurely “aged” appearance to the lower face. Plus, the resorption process hastens problems with chewing, speech, and other basic functions. 

Thanks to modern techniques and technologies, we can place a minimal number of implants to retain a maximal number of teeth! This approach further minimizes the costs, time, and demands on the body associated with treatment. And last but certainly not least, implant-supported dentures do not require ongoing relining, rebasing, adjustments, and replacement associated with conventional dentures. Again, our implant dentures keep the supportive tissues strong and retain their proper shape and fit. 

Such overdentures come in a variety of forms, including: 

  • Dentures that snap on and off of the implants by way of attachments (such as balls or bars connected to the implants)
  • Dentures that are locked or fixed in place to the implants (non-removable)
  • Partials that clip onto implants (for patients with some remaining healthy teeth)

To learn more about options to transform your smile and the rest of you, call (616) 288-2554 to schedule an appointment with our talented dentist, Dr. Matthew VanderLaan.