Bar Retained Dentures versus Overdentures

A patient who is missing teeth has more treatment options today than ever before, thanks to advances in modern dentistry. The plethora of options for replacing missing teeth is wonderful, however, it can also be overwhelming and confusing. Many patients look for guidance to determine which option will best meet their needs. Traditional dentures are still commonly used to treat tooth loss, but overdentures are becoming increasingly popular. This treatment is a hybrid which uses a combination of dental implants and dentures.

Traditional dentures are artificial teeth which are then attached to an acrylic base. The base closely mimics the natural gums. Various methods can be used to secure dentures. This includes adhesives, natural suction, or a combination of the two. Overdentures are similar in appearance to traditional dentures, but they are secured using a screw or clip which attaches to the dental implants. Implants are surgically placed in the jawbone before the overdenture is connected. With dental implants as the foundation, overdentures are extremely secure and stable, resolving many limitations or issues associated with traditional dentures.

One advantage of overdentures is that patients can consume the food they love without limitations. Another benefit of this is better nutrition. Traditional dentures often require that patients avoid certain foods and restrict their diet. Dentures can also negatively impact the taste of food as the palate may be covered. Traditional dentures can require that certain foods like meats or crunchy vegetables are cut into small pieces or avoided completely. Because overdentures are stable and secure, these modifications are not necessary.

Patients can also speak more clearly with overdentures. Some patients who have traditional dentures struggle with the pronunciation of certain letters. With the palate being covered, sounds may be muffled or the patient may have a lisp.

Overdentures also help prevent bone loss, which is a huge benefit for the patient’s oral health. The bite force with overdentures is evenly transferred to the jawbone. The jaw is dependent on stimulation from chewing to preserve the bone. Missing teeth often result in bone resorption over time which can change the patient’s appearance.

Traditional dentures rest on top of the gums, making bone resorption common as the jawbone is not stimulated. There can be significant bone resorption over time which can cause the dentures to fit poorly and require adjustments. This type of bone loss can also make patients look older as it can cause sagging skin and additional wrinkles.

A key benefit of traditional dentures is that the initial cost is less than the cost of overdentures. A main reason dentures are more affordable is because they do not use dental implants, which are quite costly. Traditional dentures do require ongoing adjustments, and may eventually need to be replaced. All of these costs quickly add up. Overdentures rarely have these types of issues. The initial investment may be higher, but the stability and longevity of overdentures makes up for the higher up front cost.

Patients with missing teeth should contact a dentist to discuss overdentures as a treatment option. Overdentures are an excellent, cost-effective solution with a high success rate.

What is a Bar Retained Overdenture

Scroll to Top