denture implants

Denture Implants

Denture implants, also known as snap-in or snap-on dentures, are a permanent tooth replacement option for patients who are missing most or all of the teeth on their upper or lower arch. This tooth replacement solution combines the benefits of dentures and dental implants.

At 5thand Olive Dental, denture implants are just one of the tooth replacement solutions that we offer our patients.

In most cases, we place 4 to 8 implants into the jawbone. The dentures will be secured to the implants, which hold them firmly in place. In order to qualify for denture implants, patients need a significant amount of high-quality jawbone. In some cases, bone grafting might help, but not all patients will qualify for denture implants.

Implant Overdenture vs. Traditional Denture

Traditional dentures are less expensive than implant overdentures. However, they are not the best option when it comes to tooth replacement. Below are a few of the differences between traditional dentures and implant overdentures:

Implant Overdenture Traditional Denture
Long-lasting tooth replacement option Short-term, affordable solution
Maintains healthy bone Will need to be replaced due to bone loss
Preserves bone quality/quantity Allows bone to shrink and degrade
Supports facial structures Facial structures decrease over time
Functions like natural teeth Slips/moves around in the mouth, making it difficult to eat
Strong/stable, dentures held securely in place Slips/moves in mouth causing sore spots
No adhesives/creams needed Requires the use of creams/adhesives

Fixed vs. Removable Snap-on Dentures

Snap-on dentures are held in place with dental implants. They may be fixed in place, which means only the dentist can remove them, or they may be removable, which means you will need to remove and clean them every night. The dental team at 5th and Olive Dental will work with you to determine your needs and goals, as well as your budget, to determine which is the best option for you.

Some of the differences between fixed versus removable snap-on dentures include:

  • Removable snap-on dentures are similar to traditional dentures in that they must be removed before bedtime for cleaning. On the other hand, fixed snap-on dentures are permanent- only the dentist can remove them. You clean them just like you would your natural teeth.
  • Removable snap-on dentures are more likely to slip out of place than fixed snap-on dentures. However, both are more secure than traditional dentures which must be held in place with denture adhesive.
  • Fixed snap-on dentures are more expensive than removable snap-on dentures because they often use more implants or require an attachment bar to hold them in place.

denture implants method

Implant Denture Procedure

The entire process typically takes 2 to 7 months. The first step in the process is the placement of the implants. The dentist will cut open your gums, which will expose the jawbone. Then, a hole will be drilled for each implant that is placed. You will need several months to recover from this and for the jawbone to fuse around the implant. This will provide the anchor for your denture.

Depending on the type of implant you’re getting, you may need a second surgery to attach the abutments. This will be the final piece in the foundation for your dentures. If you are using mini implants, the abutments are already attached, so this step will not be required.

Once you have completely healed from the implant placement, a mold will be taken of your arch. This will be sent to the lab where your dentures will be fabricated. Once they are finished, they will be sent to the office and we will schedule an appointment to place them.

Benefits of Snap-on Dentures

At 5th and Olive Dental, we want our patients to understand the benefits of snap-on dentures, which include:

  • Stability

One of the primary benefits of snap-on dentures is their stability. Since the dentures are held in place by the implants, they stay in place when eating, laughing, smiling, and talking. Traditional dentures, on the other hand, often slip and slide around in the mouth, making those tasks difficult.

  • Halts bone atrophy

When you have a tooth that is missing, the jawbone underneath will begin to deteriorate because it is not being used. This can be detrimental to your oral and even your overall health. However, snap-on dentures prevent this from happening because the implants offer the same stimulation to the jawbone that the tooth roots do. Therefore, your jawbone remains intact, allowing you to eat, talk, laugh, and smile confidently. Plus, since the jawbone remains intact, it also protects your facial structure.

  • Budget-friendly

While it is true that multiple dental implants can get expensive, snap-on dentures can be budget-friendly. This is because you only need a few implants to support a denture plate as opposed to needing a single implant for each tooth. Therefore, the process is not as expensive. Also, while many dental insurance plans do not cover cosmetic procedures, they may cover this one because it also improves functionality and health. Our office staff will work with your provider to determine coverage. If you do not have dental coverage or your coverage is not enough, we do offer a variety of payment options, including financing through CareCredit. We can also structure your dental treatment to fit into your budget.

  • Natural-looking

One of the primary concerns that our patients have with tooth replacement options is how they will look. Traditional dentures are bulky and tend to slip/slide around in the mouth, making them look fake. The good news is, snap-on dentures are held in place by dental implants, making them look more natural.

Caring for Snap-on Dentures

Regardless of the tooth replacement solution you choose, maintenance is the key to getting the most out of your investment. After all, food particles and bacteria can cause your dentures to become stained and may lead to tartar and plaque buildup- and ultimately gum disease. Proper care will depend on whether you choose fixed or removable snap-on dentures.


If your denture implants are fixed, only the dentist will be able to remove them. Therefore, your maintenance routine will be similar to how you would care for your natural teeth:

  • Brush twice daily with a soft toothbrush and regular toothpaste
  • Use a Waterpik instead of regular floss
  • Rinse with anti-bacterial mouthwash at least once daily
  • Brush and floss natural teeth as usual
  • Visit the dentist twice a year for a comprehensive exam and cleaning


    If, on the other hand, your snap-on dentures are removable, they should be removed before you go to sleep. They should be kept clean by brushing them and soaking them in a denture-cleaning solution. If you wear them to sleep, it can cause bacteria to build up, which can lead to infection and/or pain.

Who can get Denture Implants?

Snap-on dentures require dental implants, which means there are certain criteria that must be met. As a general rule, patients must:

  • Have missing/severely damaged teeth
  • Have little to no bone loss
  • Be a non-smoker
  • Not have gum disease
  • Not have TMJ syndrome
  • Be willing to avoid hard foods

Removable snap-on dentures require fewer implants than fixed snap-on dentures and some patients are able to go with mini dental implants instead. This reduces the cost of the procedure significantly. Also, you may be able to avoid additional procedures such as sinus lifting or bone grafts.

Smoking is one of the most common reasons for implant failure. Therefore, if you are a smoker, you must be willing to quit at least for a few months while you recover from the implant placement.

Patients who have TMJ often prefer fixed snap-on dentures so they can keep them in at night. Also, patients who enjoy meat and other foods that are difficult to chew may prefer a fixed solution.

Finally, you need to have good overall oral health. You must be willing to invest time and effort into aftercare, but you may also need some preparation, such as gum disease treatment, beforehand.

Cost of Denture Implants

Before we move forward with this procedure, you will be given a specific quote based on your personal situation. However, on average, you will spend around $6,000 for two dental implants and your denture. If you need more implants or additional procedures, such as bone grafting, your cost may be higher.

Your dental insurance may cover a portion of your denture implants since it is not entirely cosmetic. Our friendly office staff will work with your provider to determine coverage. If you do not have dental insurance or adequate coverage, we do accept a variety of payment options, including financing through CareCredit. We will work with you to create a treatment plan that fits your budget because we believe that everyone deserves quality dental care.

Schedule Your Consultation Today

If you are interested in finding out more about denture implants, call our office today and schedule your consultation. Our dental team will be more than happy to discuss your options and help you decide if denture implants are the best option for your tooth loss. We are located on Olive Way in Seattle. Our office hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and on Friday by appointment only. We look forward to serving you and your dental needs.

Denture Implants FAQs

When considering denture implants as a tooth replacement option, many of our patients have questions. Some of the most common questions we hear include:

How long do denture implants last?

Denture implants can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance. In some cases, the denture plate may need to be replaced due to wear and/or damage- but the implants themselves will last for a long time.

What is denture stabilization?

Denture stabilization is the process of converting traditional dentures into snap-on dentures. This involves the placement of 2 to 8 implants into the jawbone to hold the denture in place. This is not permanent; you will be able to remove the denture yourself for cleaning.

Do I need snap-on dentures?

If you already have dentures or you are missing most or all of your teeth, then you need snap-on dentures. This is because snap-on dentures are a great tooth replacement solution. The implants protect against jawbone deterioration and further tooth loss, which also protects our facial structure.

Do snap-on dentures help with bone preservation?

Yes, snap-on dentures help with bone preservation because dental implants are used to hold the dentures in place. Tooth loss causes jawbone loss because the jawbone is not being used. The implant acts as a tooth root, stimulating the jawbone, keeping it healthy.

Can you turn regular dentures into snap-on dentures?

Yes, you can convert traditional dentures into snap-on dentures. In fact, this is one of the best upgrades you can do with your dentures. The process involves adding connectors to your dentures and having implants placed. The connectors attach to the implants and can be fixed or removable.