Full-mouth reconstruction, full-mouth rehabilitation, and full-mouth restoration are terms often used interchangeably to describe the process of rebuilding or restoring all of the teeth in both the upper and lower jaws simultaneously. Your dentist, who has years of experience working with the materials and procedures related to full-mouth reconstruction, will develop a plan that addresses all your needs and will leave you with a perfect smile, ideal bite, and optimal function.
You may be a candidate for full-mouth reconstruction if:
- Your teeth have been lost due to decay or trauma
- Your teeth have been injured or fractured
- Your teeth have become severely worn because of long-term acid erosion (from foods, beverages, or acid reflux)
- You have ongoing jaw, muscle, or headache pain related to your bite
The extent of your reconstruction will depend on the condition of your teeth. Your dentist may recommend crowns, bridges, veneers, or implants to restore your smile to its best possible condition. He or she will also address the state of your gum tissue, as the health of your gums may impact the type of restorations you receive.
Your treatment plan will entail a step-by-step process detailing all aspects of your reconstruction. The duration of your treatment will depend on the extent of work needed, but in the end it will all be worth it. Your teeth, mouth, and smile will be healthy and beautiful for the rest of your life.
Replacing Your Dentures
A denture is basically a prosthetic device that allows you to chew. However, if you’ve had a denture for any length of time, you probably have found it becoming more unsteady and harder to chew or talk, and you may need to use adhesives or glue to hold it in place. This is because a denture rests on the soft tissue above your bone and not in the bone itself.
When a denture is first placed, there is usually adequate bone support to hold it, so the denture is not loose and it fits snugly. Without teeth in the bone to keep it strong, the bone and the soft tissue will remodel over time.
Since the bone is not being used, it gets thinner and thinner, deteriorating and disappearing. Dentures become very unstable and difficult, if not impossible, to wear when that happens, and some type of adhesive (glue) becomes necessary to hold them in place.
What if your denture could be solid again without the use of glue? This is possible with placement of dental implants. A dental implant is a titanium post that fuses into the bone and acts like a natural tooth to keep your bone strong and your denture secure.
Depending on how long you’ve had your denture, additional procedures may likely be necessary, such as extensive bone grafting, ridge augmentation, or sinus lifts. Replacing your denture with implants as soon as possible will put the bone back into function and help keep it from shrinking over time.
There are several options for removable or fixed dentures that are supported by four to six implants, depending on your unique needs. Dr. Dalessandro will corroborate closely with both you and your restorative dentist to create the best treatment option for you.
Implants need to be cared for and maintained just like teeth do. Research is showing that 35 to 40% of implants begin to lose bone after five years, which can be due to several different reasons. This is especially a concern when your implants are supporting your denture.
It is important that you maintain good home care as well as consistent professional care. It is highly recommended that you see your dentist every three months and your periodontist yearly to monitor and maintain your implant health.