Remember Uncle Brian? His teeth used to drop out whenever he fell asleep on the armchair? Or Auntie Mary? That time her denture flew out when she laughed? She was so embarrassed…
Many people in the United Kingdom believe that as they get older, they will lose their teeth. This is based largely upon the experiences of their parents who lost teeth and were given dentures which was the only option at the time. The other option being to remain toothless.
Unfortunately, the old style dentures rested on the gums and tended to strip them away from the remaining teeth. Hence they were known as ‘Gum Strippers’
This was the beginning of the end. For these patients the experience of tooth loss was accelerated.
Losing teeth has emotional as well as physical effects on the individual. For example:
The WHO (World Health Organisation) suggests a requirement for minimal oral health as being a lower denture supported by two implants against a conventional upper denture. This is because an implant retained lower denture preserves chewing efficiency, decreases bone loss, and improves the health of the individual.
Of course it would be better to avoid the progression to complete dentures. This can be achieved by single tooth replacement using implants. For those patients who already have complete dentures, implants provide a convenient and affordable means of improving the function and appearance of their dentures.
Can Implants Improve General Health?
Tipton, Paul – Independent Dentistry February 1996
The Emotional Effect of Tooth Loss in Edentulous People
Fiske & Davis, British Dental Journal, Vol 184 No 2 January 24 1998