Atlanta Implant Dentist Discusses an Innovative New Technology for People without Teeth: Implant-Supported Dentures

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Even the best fitting dentures will slip and loosen as the wearer ages and many denture-wearers complain of the embarrassment that seems to go hand-in-hand with poorly fitting dentures. The skilled implant dentists at Aesthetic & Implant Dentistry of Atlanta discuss how the newest innovation in teeth replacement, implant-supported dentures, helps patients experience unmatched confidence and security.

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Dr. Zelby notes, “By fixing a denture to series of implants, patients enjoy better security and avoid many of the problems associated with suction-secured dentures.”

Living without teeth can feel like a no-win situation. If a person chooses not to wear dentures, then they face a reduced quality of life and a lowered life expectancy. If they choose to replace their missing teeth with dentures, they must deal with the embarrassment of dentures slipping off at inopportune moments, a long adjustment period as they relearn basic activities such as speaking and eating, and more frequent visits to the dentist’s office for denture readjustment or replacement. For the approximately 30 million Americans missing all of their teeth, advances in dental technology has opened up a third option: implant-secured dentures. Dr. David Zelby, an Atlanta prosthodontist and dental implant specialist, discusses some of the issues associated with traditional dentures and talks about how implant-secured dentures are helping edentulous Americans take a bite out of life.

Living without teeth can have a profoundly negative impact on a person’s quality of life. First, edentulous people have a restrictive diet, limited primarily to soft foods. These severe dietary restrictions result in poor nutrition which, in turn, leads to poor overall health. So serious is this problem, research indicates that people without teeth generally do not live as long as people with either natural or artificial teeth. Furthermore, toothless individuals tend to suffer from poor self-esteem. Without the support provided by the teeth, a person’s lips and cheeks sink inward, causing them to look older and in poor health. A lack of confidence in their appearance prompts many edentulous Americans to avoid social situations, which further detracts from their quality of life.

While traditional dentures have helped people missing their natural teeth look better and live healthier lives for centuries, they do have a few significant drawbacks. For instance, dentures are held in place using suction and special adhesives. While suction generally holds a top denture in place very well, bottom dentures have a higher tendency to loosen and move while a person eats, talks, or laughs. Specially formulated denture adhesives can offer more support but prolonged use can cause sore spots on the gums. Finally, traditional dentures have to be readjusted, refitted, or replaced frequently. As Dr. Zelby, an Atlanta dentist with extensive training in dental prosthetics such as dentures, explains, “As a patient ages, his or her gum ridges and jawbone shrink, causing dentures to loosen and require readjustment or replacement.”

For years, prosthodontists have used crown-capped dental implants to help patients in need of a single tooth replacement. However, many people have no idea that a skilled dental prosthetic specialist can use dental implants to secure a full set of dentures. Instead of resting on top of the gums, dental implants are literally implanted into the jaw bone and take the place of missing tooth roots. The bone tissue integrates with the biocompatible implant, providing an exceptionally stable base for a variety of dental prosthetics from a single crown to a full set of dentures. Dr. Zelby notes, “By fixing a denture to series of implants, patients enjoy better security and avoid many of the problems associated with suction-secured dentures.” Indeed, some of the benefits of implant-secured dentures include:

  • Patients do not have to worry about their dentures sliding, slipping, clicking, or popping off entirely.
  • Implant-secured dentures look and function just like real teeth and most patients experience an immediate boost in self-confidence.
  • After a prosthodontist has placed the denture, a patient can literally walk out of the office and go eat a steak. People with implant-secured dentures can eat a full variety of foods without having to re-learn or practice eating.
  • Better hygiene, since food particles do not become trapped beneath implant-secured dentures.
  • No need for denture adhesives.
  • Improved bone health, since dental implants maintain bone density within the jaw.

Dr. Zelby notes that dental implants are not the right solution for every patient. People who have been missing teeth for years generally have diminished jawbone density, meaning their jaws may not have the strength to support implants. “In cases like these,” says Dr. Zelby, “bone grafting may help to augment jawbone density.”

To discuss dental implants with a respected implant specialist, Dr. David Zelby, interested parties can call Aesthetic & Implant Dentistry of Atlanta at (770) 995-0550 or visit

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Regina Hersey
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