Cheer up New Denture Wearers

Garland, TX

#428 Jul 30, 2009
Angel, I'm in Texas but I have not idea the dental rates everywhere. All I know is my dentures, full upper and lower, ran over $3200, surgery for total extraction was over $9800, and all visits since, for follow ups with the surgeon and all the adjustments with the dentist, have been included in those fees. Insurance wasn't great but did cover most of the full dentures but left nothing for the surgery so I got it covered thru Care Credit. Not thrilled to be making payments but better % rate than my other options and doesn't wipe out our savings.

Both plates were "immediates" and the lower was made with 3 snap spots preplaced for when I got my implants. Now that the surgeon says I'm ready for that step, he's sending the "real" implants to my dentist to put in. The 3 small stints will remain on the lower as added security as they've held up quite well throughout my recovery. The surgeon said I could keep them or not, and that they were so well in place that the added support is good--all my call. Well who am I to reject added support?! So they're staying!

I could have had my uppers made with the spots preplanned for implants but in the beginning my bone loss was worse looking so it didn't look like that would be an option. But now that I've healed, the surgeon said he's seen the bone structure and said the bone loss wasn't nearly as bad as once thought so I can have implants now. They'll be like the small ones I have on the bottom only I'll have 5 for full support instead of just 3 like I do on the bottom. A lot of people aren't offered this option as their surgeons don't do this type of procedure after the extractions are already done. Something about doing everything at once is fine but doing something more after isn't a service they provide. My surgeon is also a well-known instructor at the Baylor School of Dentistry, a very large and prestigious school in Dallas, and works with cutting-edge (no pun intended) technology and techniques to preserve, restore, and make lifelong changes in his patients lives. He's done nothing but be frank and even brutal in his explanations and I've appreciated all his honesty and answers. I've challenged him too with my own blunt questions (I asked about kissing today!) and he's always taken the time to sit down and quite candidly answered or explained things.

Heidi, I'm glad to hear your hubby is helping you thru all this and handing out the meds. My hubby did the same, even went so far as to create a chart of what was taken when and when the next was due! He checked off each one as it was taken so there wasn't room to screw up and take more of 1 than the other! My dog knew I was hurting and even took it on himself to keep me safe from anyone bumping me or bothering me as I'd doze on the couch, in the chair or even walking from one to the other! He'd growl at anyone coming near me until I'd let him know it was ok to let them near! I had some really good care. But I'm not one to be coddled or hovered over. That drives me nuts--worse than the pain! So I mentally pushed myself to keep moving forward thru the pain, thru recovery, thru the blues (I still have those times tho!), and thru the dread of what I look like without teeth, and that worked for me. It might work for you too--maybe in a different way, but worth thinking about.

Hang in there tho, and don't give in and just go without your denture. Keep it in as long as you can, take some frequent but very short breaks from it, and give it time. I wear mine pretty much all the time, even sleeping! I'm determined these will become a part of me, like being dressed. Some can't be seen unless they have on their make-up. Well I won't be seen unless my face is complete--mouth, teeth and all!

Since: Jun 09

Littleton, CO

#429 Jul 30, 2009
Hi all,

I met with the folks at Clear Choice today. What they offer is what I want but the prohibitive factor is that they will NOT do just the uppers and insist on doing the lowers first.

The cost for everything is just short of $24,000 for the upper and another $24,000 for the lower AND you have to pay for the whole nine yards upfront, naturally. The other option they offered was to do the lower at $24,000 and then make me a new upper denture but they would not do it the other way -- do the uppers for $24,000 and make me a lower denture. Either way I would chose, I would have to give up my remaining lower teeth.

So, since I'm not willing to spend $48,000 I guess I'm stuck. That's a ton of money; my husband is retired, our stock portfolio is in the crapper so there is no chance of making any money there and at our age, we never know what's ahead of us. I guess I have to consider everything and in four years, I'll be 70 years old; he will be 72. I'm not feeling comfortable in spending whatever little nest egg I could save in the next four years on myself.

Right now, I'm leaning toward having the four upper implants put in place (my bone loss is minimal right now but it won't stay that way.) While I'm waiting for the osteo-integration, I can save for the upper implant supported palateless denture.(I really didn't want that bar in my mouth!) Maybe a year later, I can afford the implant supported lower.

I thought about calling around to see if anyone does an upper implant supported denture with the bar this a stupid idea?

It seems like the only immediate alternative is to spend the $260 for the new full upper and go ahead with the four upper implants to prevent bone loss.

If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them. I never expected to be told the total cost was so much or that I had to have the lower done first.

On a positive note, I don't need the sinus uplift.


#430 Jul 31, 2009
Dear MerryMac,

You may find some answers in this booklet about Burning Mouth Syndrome:

Even the experts are not sure about a definite cause of the problem, but the booklet lists several factors that could be contributing to the problem. If you find a specialist, then he/she may be able to help you wear regular upper dentures.

If you are still considering a regular denture with a palatal arch for your upper jaw, then implants are wasted money in almost all cases. A correct relining and dental adhesive combined with the suction provided by the palatal arch should keep the denture in place. Where some of my clients consider implants are to hold the lower denture in place (since there is less suction provided by the gum cover only). For new denture wearers we always recommend to try out the lower denture without implants for 9-12 months with one, sometimes two, relinings (after several teeth have been extracted, the gum and bone needs time to settle and major changes will only occur in the first 6-9 months). Only a small percentage finds implants necessary after this period.

If you are considering implants only out of concern about bone loss, then you may be making a decision for the wrong reasons. It is true that an implant will stimulate the bone and will slow down (not stop) the natural rate of bone loss. But only in the places where the implants are sitting and it is not as if your cranium will crumble if you do not get the implants. Bone loss occurs at a natural rate all through life, but it increases the older we get. That is why it is necessary to have dentures relined every 12-18 months. At some point the gum and bone will have changed so much that relining will no longer suffice (or the dentures are worn down) so it will be necessary with a new set of dentures every 3-6 years. When you get a new set of dentures, the gum cover will be a bit thicker to make up for the bone loss and to ensure that you continue to have a 'full face'.

I organize dental travel to Budapest, but I am not a dentist. I would recommend that you also seek a second opinion about whether implants is the right way to go from a dentist who is not qualified to do implants, because then you may be able to get an impartial recommendation (from somebody who has nothing to gain if you get implants).



Bryn Mawr, PA

#431 Jul 31, 2009
Angel and MerryMac, I'm so confused about that whole bar thing. Will there be a bar in my mouth? I thought there were just snaps in the denture that snapped onto the implant posts. Any clarity most appreciated. xo, R

Ogden, UT

#432 Jul 31, 2009
Oh, man I am having a ROUGH morning. It sure is hard to get myself outside for morning chores when I hurt so bad and I just HATE waking up my wonderful hubby to do the milking... He is already doing everything else for me. My dentist will do another adjustment this afternoon. I'm praying that this one will make a big difference.

I've been removing the denture several times a day to wash it and to rinse with hot salt water, but I'm putting it immediately back in. Some of you have said it is a relief to let your gums breath without the denture for short periods, but my dentist has told me not to do that. It's really bothering me though. There is a very yucky odor from my mouth when I remove the denture to rinse, etc. Isn't that possibly a sign of infection? He did not give me ANY antibiotics after my extractions. Well, can't take another half vicodin until 10am and the goats cant wait that long to be milked, so I better dose up on ibuprofen and get it done. Pray me well, friends... this is getting me down.:(

Santee, CA

#433 Jul 31, 2009
MM: I am so bummed out for you. But understand your financial and age concerns as well - we are rowing the same boat. Just to let you know - and Robinn: I DO NOT HAVE A BAR. I would definetly seek another opinion. If you were shopping for a car, I'm sure you would check out more than 1 model. I know it's a p.i.t.a. but you should.

I have started developing a real burn in my mouth to the point where the gums are irritated, red, and getting blistered. I have an appt on Thursday. This is fairly new - I don't know what's causing it, but even the top of my tongue is burning too. Very irritating.

Heidi - don't use hot water. Use just warm - see if that helps. Most likely that odor is seepage - blood, tissue junk. Your visit today should answer most of your questios and, oh gosh, I hope that you get some comfort. At least for a little while.

Mmmmmmm Goat milk! Are they your pets or do you sell the milk - and goat cheese - the best! And you can eat it!

Since: Jun 09

Littleton, CO

#434 Jul 31, 2009
Robin wrote:
Angel and MerryMac, I'm so confused about that whole bar thing. Will there be a bar in my mouth? I thought there were just snaps in the denture that snapped onto the implant posts. Any clarity most appreciated. xo, R
Hi Robin...I believe there can be either...two different schools of thought. Some believe the bar stabilizes, others believe just the opposite.

I think most use the bar with the implant supported denture. With the bridge, there is a concealed bar, so you don't see it.

I can't remember which you are getting but you should ask your dentist for sure.

I'm still trying to find a palateless implant supported denture without the bar that I can afford.

Since: Jun 09

Littleton, CO

#435 Jul 31, 2009
Angel...when you had (or do you still have) just the implant supported palateless upper, do I understand you did not have the bar?

Who made this prosthesis? Maybe they know someone in Denver.

Since: Jun 09

Littleton, CO

#436 Jul 31, 2009
Heidi, doing my best to pray you well. I know others here will join me too.

When you do the warm salt water rinse, do it for about five minutes. Usually, when swishing and rinsing we do it rather quickly, but a good five minutes on rinsing for as long as you can, then spitting, then rinsing...etc., should help.

I'd check with your dentist...could be an infection so don't take that risk. Maybe it wouldn't hurt to do a round of antibiotics to be sure.

Santee, CA

#437 Jul 31, 2009
MM: My office is Dr. Howard Feffer in La Mesa, CA. I do not have the bar across. The denture just snaps to the implanted 4 posts. Four implants snap to four holes in the denture. It works perfect. I think I was told that different manufacters of the implants require different parts. Perhaps the mfg that your dentist buys from offers the bar/parts. As far as I know the plate was made right there in their own lab. I do know that when the bridges were made that some parts had to be flown in and I had a delayed install. But not with the top denture.
Yep - if you aren't happy with the bar at this point, you probably won't be later either.
You need a tomato sandwich - go spoil yourself ;-)

Since: Jun 09

Littleton, CO

#438 Jul 31, 2009
I've been on the phone all morning. I found a dentist who offers an immediate palateless upper denture, ball not bar supported for $2,095. Each titanium implant is $1125.
The implants will either be OCO or Imtec and I've researched both companies. There are no complaints about this dentist that I can find. I made an appointment for a consult. That's very affordable, almost too affordable.

I'm still researching; a tomato sandwich sounds great ----> on my way to the kitchen.

Bryn Mawr, PA

#439 Jul 31, 2009
Angel, thank you. My dentist never mentioned a bar, he did talk "snaps" so I'm guessing that's what I'll get. I will definitely ask, though.

These price ranges kill me.

I'm worried about your tissue issue. Let us know, okay? xo, R

Ogden, UT

#440 Jul 31, 2009
I feel like a new woman. Doc numbed me all up and did a thorough exam. I do have some infection things going on and he gave me lots of goodies for that. I got a prescription mouthwash with a strong topical anesthetic in it that he says I can use as much as I want, an anti-bacterial rinse for morning and bedtime, a prescription of amoxacillin, and a few more pain pills.

I'm feeling pretty good right now. The numbness is worn off, but I had my ibuprofen and half-vicodan and even ate some egg salad sandwich (all 'cept the crust! hehe!).

Oh, and my doc says I can drop in anytime the pain gets unbareable and he'll poke a few holes of novacaine in me. hehe! You know, he communicated more information to me this visit than ever before and that is helping my state of mind. Of coarse, it's because of this forum that I am figuring out what questions to ask too. Thanks everybody! I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel!

<ps - yes, Angel... my goats are my pets, but I keep them for the milk and cheese that they provide my family. I also have a shetland ewe. She provides me with fiber for spinning and a couple of meat lambs every year. OH! and i have a half dozen laying hens.... just a little half-acre Urban backyard farmette>

Santee, CA

#441 Jul 31, 2009
Well, Heidi - you sound like a new woman!:-) I guess my only comment is that it seems a little odd that the dentist waited until you got an infection before he prescribed meds. Those were handed to me as I left the office after the extractions - rinse too.
You are doing really well if you can eat a sandwich - believe me. It is great that this forum has helped you out. I think we have more information and experience here than anywhere else that I researched as far as being what this experience will really be like!

Yes, Robin - my mouth is very sore. I have been looking around the 'net and see that it could be an allergy to the metal (but I don't think so because it has come on so quickly), or maybe fungal in some form or another. I have not been "soaking" my denture in a commercial cleaner because I was told that soaking the snaps shortens their life. I could have caused my own problem by only brushing them - I found a couple of things to try - salt water rinsing (seems to be a fix for everything) and apple cider vinegar. I am going to put my denture in that for a couple of hrs each day, and do the salt water rinses until Thursday - unless this drives me nuts before then. But all of this makes sense now.

Ogden, UT

#442 Jul 31, 2009
Angel wrote:
... seems a little odd that the dentist waited until you got an infection before he prescribed meds. Those were handed to me as I left the office after the extractions - rinse too...
You know, my husband commented on that very thing today. He is wondering if the dentist perhaps just completely forgot to prescribe all that stuff as I left from my extraction surgery. And maybe he did not even realize it until today when I started asking about all that stuff because I saw that most of you were given those things. Oh, well... I just rinsed with that "magic mouthwash" stuff he gave me and washed up my mouth and dentures and have set them aside for my first real break from wearing them and it feels gooooood! I'm thinking that the worst of my suffering is past now -- I guess attitude is golden. I am feeling much more optimistic.

Kilauea, HI

#443 Aug 1, 2009
MM have you gone to a university? I have a friend at work that went to UCLA and had all done for just under 10,000. Seems as though the students are more motivated to do good and the instructors are trying to teach so you could ultimately get a better deal all around going to a university. You are not that far from California. It would be worth the cheap cost of an airline ticket to get out here and get your work done.:)

Still cannot wear bottoms.(teeth that is :)

Ogden, UT

#444 Aug 1, 2009
Wow! Twelve hours since today's adjustment and 'scriptions for antibiotics and rinses and not even one single episode of tear-inducing pain! Thanks for your sustaining prayers, advise, experiences, etc.
I know I made the right decision now and I hope, hope, hope that one day I can help someone else as much as you all are helping me!

Garland, TX

#445 Aug 1, 2009
So glad you're doing better, Heidi. It's amazing how much better you feel once you have a way to deal with the pain and transition. This forum has been such a major help to me since early summer, and I don't see a reason to leave it just cuz I'm doing ok now. I like it here. The people are "just like me" tho many have had different reasons for dentures, partials, or other, there's still a connection and the wonderful feeling of not being alone in this part of life!

Keep up the improvements and hope to see your postings again soon!

Royal Oak, MI

#446 Aug 1, 2009
I had my last three upper teeth removed Thursday, and my partial was turned into a denture which was placed immediately. Today, Saturday, I wore them for most of the day, and since I took them out, my mouth is soooo sore, and its hard to believe that I will ever be able to eat normal food again. I have been eating soup, chili, a cheerios soaked in skim milk until soft, and rice w/ gravy. Today also when I took them out (which was very hard) I think it pulled some of the stictches out. I am still soaking with salt water, and wondering is this supposed to be like this?

I have learned so much reading everyones post, it has been very helpful in letting me know that I am not alone, and that this soreness is normal for this type of procedure. I wish everyone the best.

Garland, TX

#447 Aug 1, 2009

Doubtful stitches pulled out but after a few days they do start dissolving, some quicker than others. Maybe that's the case. If you start bleeding, follow up with dentist/oral surgeon to be sure all is ok. Otherwise, hang in there! It will get better as your gums heal and become more solid. The denture is hard to take out and put it cuz gums may have some swelling, that and being a little apprehensive too! Stick with it and do plenty of rinses. I can't do the salt water rinses (they make me gag) but I did lots of ice water rinses thinking cold is good for other swollen or puffy areas, why not the gums too? Dentist said it worked well for me, and I've found a new fondness for ice water now that's me keep off the weight I lost while eating less during recovery!

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