What is a Locator Denture?
Traditional dentures are no longer the only option available if you need replacement teeth. Denture technology has improved significantly, and there are now new measures available to attach dentures within your mouth that have been designed to affix your dentures more securely with the use of denture locator implants.
Denture locators are a set of dental implants that are physically placed by your dental surgeon at strategic locations in the jaw to provide solid, fixed-position anchors. These anchors physically connect the denture appliance to your jaw. Dentures secured in place using this type of implant connection are called overdentures.
How Do Denture Locator Implants Work?
The denture locator implants are specifically placed in locations within your jaw to stabilize and secure the overdentures in place. The number of implants required depends on factors such as the number of teeth being replaced, as well as the size and shape of your jaw.
In addition to impacting the number of implants necessary, the shape and size of your jaw will also dictate both the angle and the orientation at which the implants are surgically inserted. The goal of your dentist is to provide you with a stable, secure, and an extended life expectancy for your overdentures. They will methodically plan their approach on the number of implants to use, and how each will be positioned to provide the most successful restoration.
The top, visible end of each locator implant is shaped to snap solidly into the connections added to the underside of the overdenture appliance. These connections are often capped with a soft material that provides some shock absorption and flexibility when natural pressure or movement is applied to avoid any pain or discomfort while eating, drinking, and talking.
Advantages of Implants for Attaching Dentures
Patients who have transitioned from traditional dentures to an implant-based overdenture system report considerably greater comfort and satisfaction. Since the connection is far more solid and secure than conventional denture adhesives, patients can enjoy a wider variety of foods by reducing the slippage movement that often occurs with traditional dentures. These advantages result in a healthier and more robust diet because of the added stability, and an increased overall satisfaction in lifestyle.
A major advantage that denture locators provide over traditional dentures is the elimination of adhesive products that are used to hold the dentures in place. The connection between the overdenture and the implant is solid and secure enough to hold them in place with no additional adhesives needed. This will save you money and make it more convenient in maintaining and cleaning your replacement teeth.
Cleaning your overdenture and the denture locator implants is easy. Use a gentle cleanser and a soft bristled toothbrush to clean the overdenture, as well as flossing between the replacement teeth. Your gums, tongue, and the implants will require regular cleaning using a soft bristled toothbrush.
Another advantage from implant-supported dentures is reduced bone loss in your jaw. Traditional dentures do not provide the necessary pressure stimulation to the jawbone from chewing that natural teeth do, resulting in atrophy. Implants function like an artificial root, providing greater stimulation to the surrounding bone structure, reducing the severity of bone resorption over time.