Diabetes complications have led to two amputated toes on my left foot and needing my ten remaining upper teeth extracted. I understand facial collapse will follow the extractions, so I have been talking to my dentist about dentures. I requested a high-end denture with teeth that look real, but for some reason, my dentist doesn’t seem confident about doing a high-end denture. He didn’t refuse, but he talk more about more affordable options. I know what I want. I am also concerned about how facial collapse will affect my denture in the long term. Is facial collapse rapid? Thank you. Spencer from Fort Worth
Thank you for contacting our office. Dr. Tostado would need to examine and x-ray your teeth to explain your options and develop a treatment plan. A custom high-end denture is personalized, improves denture fit, and helps your replacement teeth look more like your natural smile. We will discuss why facial collapse occurs and how to prevent it.
How Long After Teeth Extractions Does Facial Collapse Occur?
Facial collapse is gradual and occurs over ten to twenty years after all your teeth are missing. According to the American Academy of Implant Dentistry, your jawbone resorbs 25 percent in the first three months after teeth extractions and up to 50 percent in the first six months.
How Will Dentures Affect Your Facial Appearance?
When dentures rest on your gums, they accelerate bone shrinkage. As your bone shrinks, you will need periodic denture relines and replacements. As your jawbone narrows over the years, a removable denture will not stay in place.
How Can You Prevent Facial Collapse?
You can prevent facial collapse with implant-supported dentures. Dental implants are the most effective solution for preserving the jawbone and keeping facial muscles intact.
Implants have these benefits:
- A dentist places them in your jawbone to stimulate the bone like natural tooth roots.
- They help prevent bone shrinkage.
- They decrease the risk of premature facial sagging.
- Denture stability and function will increase.
When a prosthodontist (tooth restoration and removal specialist) removes your remaining teeth and immediately places implants, it can prevent the need for bone grafting procedures. The implants will stimulate your bone, and you can get replacement teeth the same day (Teeth-in-a-Day).
Can You Fix Facial Collapse?
Yes, there is hope for correcting facial collapse. Grafting procedures can build up the jawbone, and after a healing period, a prosthodontist can place dental implants to keep the jawbone intact. The bone grafts and a new custom denture will lift your facial muscles and help reshape your face.
We recommend getting a second opinion from one or two prosthodontists to discuss your options for Teeth-in-a-Day with a custom denture.
San Antonio, Texas, prosthodontist and cosmetic dentist Dr. Gilberto Tostado sponsors this post.