Complete edentulism can result in difficulties for patients who have removable prosthesis such as loss of stability and retention of the dentures overtime due to resorption of the alveolar ridge, difficulty with speech, mastication, and potential for decreased quality of life resulting from problems with ill-fitting dentures. For these patients, the options of dental implants offer an option of restorations that can improve overall quality of life. The goal of implant therapy for completely edentulous patients is not only geared towards helping to preserve bone and soft tissue in the ridge but also to restore these patients to optimal function and esthetics.
Due to a number of factors contributing to the complexity of treatment planning dental implants for edentulous patients such as the bone quality and quantity, lip line and lip length, anatomy and shape of the edentulous ridge, interocclusal distance, age of patient and patient expectations, detailed diagnosis and treatment planning are essential to achieving success with dental implant therapy. The goal of this course is to review all aspects of implant treatment planning for edentulous patients to ensure that dentists that are treatment planning, placing and/or restoring dental implants are aware of factors that affect implant success and ways of mitigating them for dental implant success.