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FAQ:  Dentures



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Dentures Ask The Dentist Richard Winter Question:
Grind down jaw bone? My 80 year old dad within the last couple of months lost yet another tooth and I think another broke off.

At the time he was wearing partial dentures. Since he lost another tooth and another broke off he went back to the dentist and had what were remaining removed and requested implants or dentures.

The dentist told him he couldn't do anything until he saw an oral surgeon and had his jaw ground down. My dad did not tell me specifically why a dentist would want this done first.

Could you provide some reasons? And is it necessary to do this if there is nothing wrong with the jaw bone? ...Visitor from WI

Answer:
Your dentist should be able to answer these questions.

If a denture is made on bone that is too large, the denture won't look good, as the denture acrylic must cover the remaining bone. This should have been trimmed at the time of extractions to avoid a secondary surgery.

Implants should be discussed and planned for, before the extractions so unnecessary bone isn't removed! This bone, once gone, is difficult to replace.

The option of implant supported bridges - even at age 80 - could be done without removing this precious bone. The costs, benefits, options and risks should be discussed so that a comprehensive treatment can be decided before all surgery was done.

If an implant supported overdenture was the plan, then bone needs to be trimmed to make room for the implant chimneys, or abutments and the housing in the denture to hold on to the implants.

Wisconsin Reconstructive Implant Dentistry
Wisconsin Prosthodontics
Richard Winter, DDS MAGD
Winter Dental Associates
Hampton Dental Associates
5323 W. Hampton Avenue
Milwaukee Wisconsin WI 53218
(414) 464-9021

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