Ask the Dentist


Dear Dr. Winter,

I need to have an implant restored but the dentist I saw said that it can’t be restored it has to be removed. Is this something you can do? Can you give me a second opinion as to whether it can be saved and if it needs removal can you do this?
– Maria

Dear Maria,

Dear Maria, yes, I can give you a second opinion and if the implant needs to be removed, I can remove it. If your implant has failed, there are several possible reasons for its failure. It can fail because of peri-implantitis which is like periodontitis or gum disease. The bone can be lost from around the implant due to bacteria, chewing forces, smoking, diabetes, leftover cement around the implant and a host of other factors that can contribute to failure of a titanium implant.

The implant can also fail if it is placed improperly or in the wrong position. So, failure to plan the implant’s location can also become an obstacle to proper restoration. We can give you a second opinion and a CBCT or CAT scan of the area that may be required to see the implant in 3 dimensions to best diagnose the problem. There is a fee for this type of second opinion as it requires x-rays and time, but we can certainly come up with an assessment as to what went wrong to try and avoid these issues going forward.

Dear Dr. Winter,

Dear Dr. Winter, I would like to know the difference between a Snap-on- denture and a bar overdenture. I have heard these are less expensive than the permanent implant teeth and am not sure of the benefits to these treatments.

Dear Renee, a bar-overdenture is an excellent prosthesis as there is a bar that splints the implants together. So, if you have 4, 5 or 6 implants or more and a bar is made to connect these implants they are rigidly connected, and they reinforce each other. Making a milled bar and the metal superstructure that fits in the denture that snaps over the bar adds cost to the treatment for this extra reinforcement and support, but it is a very comfortable and cleansable prosthesis. A Snap-on-denture or Locator denture is a denture that snaps on to each individual implant via a male and female attachment. These come from different manufacturers and are of different design but they all work by clipping a denture directly on to a snap that has been screwed and torqued into the implant.

These are less costly and if the bone is of sufficient quality and the implants are well-integrated this is a comfortable prosthesis that is also very easily cleaned. The difference usually comes down to money. If you can make an investment to have a bar overdenture it is better, in my opinion, than a denture that goes to each individual implant due to force distribution. It is like breaking a pencil versus gluing 5 together as they are much stronger. A bar is like a glue holding the implants together. If someone can afford a bar-overdenture they are very close in price to having a fixed bridge on implants so that should also be part of your discussions! Please visit to learn more about Snap-on dentures, bar-overdentures and implant bridges!

We offer 24 month interest free financing through Care Credit and provide financing through I-Care to ensure this is affordable! Please call 414-464-9021 to schedule your comprehensive examination today.

Master Academy of General Dentistry
Diplomate International Congress of Oral Implantologists
Diplomate American Board of Oral Implantologists
Fellow American Academy of Implant Dentistry
Dr. Bruce Winter Board MATC
Associate Professor Marquette Dental School

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