A Bridge Too Far?
The initial process of removing the two upper bridges went smoothly and painlessly. Then followed a period of time for the upper gum to heal up. When this was completed, following some x-ray photos of the upper jaw, the main part of the procedure took place. It involved, in my case, the exposure of the whole upper gum to reveal suitable sites for the implants. It was decided on two groups of three implants, a group on either side. The implants were "tapped" in with a hammer, although the term "tapped" is a little misleading, as at times quite some force was required. I was left afterwards with a light, dull headache which soon receded and a rather sore upper gum for a few days which was tolerable.
A temporary upper denture was provided but it was at least a week before I could use it. Despite manufacturers claims about the adhesives needed to secure the denture, there were days when the denture became loose and needed to be cleaned and refixed. The stitches were removed, accompanied by a faint "tickling" sensation. Again, when all had healed up, the implant sites were opened up and the implants tested. Three on one side were secure, but the other three had failed. These were removed and grafting material inserted.
The soreness of the gum this time was much less, there being much less of the gum cut open. Again, another period for healing followed. Later, after a suitable time for the grafting to be completed, that site was opened and three new implants were fitted.
Some time later, the new implants were exposed and tested. This time they had "taken". Hooray! Caps were attached to the implants and the denture adjusted to allow for the new contour of the gum.
Finally after impressions had been taken, the new bridge arrived to be tested for fit, and to check the teeth colour compatibility- all O.K., so off they went, back to the Dental Technician for completion.
At last came the day when the new bridge was cemented in place. I found that I had to be careful with hot drinks since the hard palate had become used to being protected by the temporary denture and several times I burnt the newly exposed hard palate. It also took a little time to get used to the new feel of the bridge, both in size and position. Also a new sensation as saliva can pass under the bridge, giving it an almost "surreal" feeling.
As part of my income comes from professional singing, I was very relieved to find that the new bridge hardly affected my singing, although "F's" and "S's" sounded a little different. The main benefit was a new secure bridge, and no more messing about with denture adhesives!