Implant-supported dentures – San Diego dental implants

Implant-supported dentures – San Diego dental implants

Those who are missing one tooth almost always prefer a dental implant to replace that tooth. With the many advantages of dental implants over other options, this is usually an easy choice.

What about for those who are missing many or all of their teeth? Are dental implants a good option for them? Would they need a dental implant for each missing tooth, or is there a simpler way to replace their teeth?

Implant-supported dentures

When a dental implant replaces a single tooth, the artificial tooth itself is usually a crown. This is a single tooth made of porcelain, which has a very lifelike appearance. There are 28 teeth in a healthy adult mouth (not counting the third molars, or “wisdom teeth”), and it would be time-consuming and expensive to place 28 dental implants supporting 28 crowns. Fortunately, this is not necessary.

When replacing most or all of the teeth, dental implants can be used to support a denture. When a quality denture is supported by dental implants, it is extremely stable and secure, and offers a restoration that’s as close as possible to having the natural teeth back. A quality denture is high-quality, crafted of lifelike materials, and well-fitting.


Several dental implants can support a full denture (an upper or lower plate). In general, the minimum number needed is four in the lower jaw. Because just four implants can support all of the replacement teeth in one jaw, the procedure is sometimes called “all-on-4.”

The upper jaw generally requires more implants than the lower jaw. This is because the upper jaw is thinner due to the presence of the sinuses just above it. Each implant must be shorter in order to avoid poking through the jaw into the sinuses, which means that each implant can’t absorb as much force as a longer implant. This requires the use of a greater number of implants to ensure that the denture will remain secure. Because of this issue, a minimum of six implants are needed in the upper jaw.

Four implants in the lower jaw or six in the upper jaw is the minimum. Most dentists recommend using a few more implants (one or two extra) if possible. This helps to distribute the forces of chewing and reduce the amount of force placed on each implant, which increases the likelihood that the implants will be successful long-term.

San Diego dental implants

We offer the option of implant-supported dentures here at La Jolla Center for Advanced Dentistry. Dr. Gile received a prestigious award from the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, and has trained extensively in the placement of dental implants. Those who want to consider San Diego dental implants for replacing missing teeth should come for a consultation with one of our dentists.

Patients who receive dental implants are nearly always ecstatic to be able to eat and speak normally again, without worrying about a denture slipping out of place. No matter how many teeth you’re missing, dental implants are the ideal way to restore your smile.

La Jolla Center for Advanced Dentistry
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