Sixty-one patients participated in a longitudinal study designed to compare the psychological effects of osseointegrated implants with those of conventional denture replacements. Thirty-two patients who requested either relining or reconstruction of their dentures were asked to complete questionnaires designed to measure their psychological well-being while they were on a waiting list and then again 6 months after treatment. Their responses were compared with those of 29 patients who had received an osseointegrated implant. While the implant patients had reported significant declines in psychological distress, there was no such change for the denture patients. Although both groups experienced fewer disabling symptoms, the decline was greater for the implant group. Finally, neither group showed evidence of any change in self-esteem. The results suggest that osseointegrated implants can have a more positive effect on well-being than denture replacements.
Keywords: dentures, osseointegrated implants, psychological effects