Dentures have a major problem. Because they rest on your gum tissue, which is not capable of supporting the full force of your bite, they can cause irritation of the gums and resorption of the bones in the jaw.

Man with a big, happy smile on his face

Support for dentures can make a big difference in the function and durability of your dentures. We often talk about support for dentures being provided by dental implants. But there’s another way we can support your dentures : retained tooth roots. Working with retained roots has some advantages and should be considered if you have eligible candidates.

Advantages for Retained Roots as Denture Support

There are some good reasons to consider using your tooth roots to provide denture support. Because your tooth roots are already in your mouth, you can avoid the surgery that is required by dental implants. It may be necessary to perform a root canal, or put special caps (called copings) on your roots to protect them, but these procedures are less invasive, and don’t require as long to recover from as dental implant surgery.

And with the reduced need for surgery, this procedure can often be cheaper than surgery for dental implants. Even if we end up using gold copings on top of your tooth roots, the cost is much less than for implant surgery.

Your natural teeth have several benefits over dental implants, too, in terms of their interaction with your jawbone. The periodontal ligaments that bond your tooth to the jawbone allows for more flexibility. It also stimulates the release of more bone-building cells, called osteoblasts, than are released by dental implants. This can reduce the amount of bone resorption you experience.

Limitations of Retained Roots

However, retained roots are not always ideal. They have many limitations that may mean retaining them is not right for you.

First, it’s uncommon to find tooth roots that are in good condition for this job. If you are getting dentures, it’s likely that many if not all your teeth are unhealthy. We have to carefully evaluate roots we are considering retaining.

Retained roots are good for supporting dentures, but they are not good for retaining dentures (ironically). We can’t install locators or other anchoring mechanisms that will hold your dentures in place. Your dentures will be more stable with retained roots, but not as stable as implant dentures.

And because your roots are already in place, we have to work with their position. The location may not be optimal for supporting your dentures, but we don’t have the option of moving them. With dental implants, we can select optimal placement to ensure proper balance and support.

Usually Dental Implants Are Best

When it comes to supporting dentures, dental implants are usually a better option than retained tooth roots. However, it’s an option that is worth considering to improve the comfort and function of your dentures.

If you want to learn more about your options for quality dentures in Columbia, SC, please call (803) 781-9090 today for an appointment with a denture dentist at Smile Columbia Dentistry.