Dental implants or dentures? Which is best for you? That’s a big question many dental patients are asking themselves everyday.
If that’s you, hopefully you’ll find this post helpful.
Many adults are missing at least one tooth. Tooth loss is not only stressful, but can cause embarrassment about your smile, but it can be detrimental to your health.
Thankfully, you have a wide range of options when it comes to missing teeth. Two of the most common tooth replacement options are dentures and dental implants.
What are dentures? Dentures are removable prosthetics made to replace missing teeth and the surrounding tissues. There are two types of dentures available; there are complete dentures, which are used when all of the teeth are missing, and partial dentures, which are used when there are still some remaining natural teeth.
Dentures have been around for a long time, and have been a popular choice. The main downfall of dentures is that they require dental adhesives, which usually taste horrible, to hold them securely in place. They also are not typically very strong, which means your dentures can shift while you are eating or talking. This can lead to very embarrassing mishaps, such as your dentures falling out of your mouth entirely.
The common alternative to dentures is dental implants. A dental implant is a tiny titanium post that is anchored into the jawbone surgically. After this heals, a crown is then placed on top of the screw. This crown appears and functions just like your natural tooth did before.
Dental implants are stable, durable, and permanent. They do not need to be removed for maintenance and cleaning, as dentures do. Instead, you can clean them just like real teeth by brushing or flossing them.
A good candidate for dental implants would be someone who has good oral health and does not smoke.
Single or multiple implants
A single implant is a good option for those missing only one tooth. For those missing multiple teeth, a few implants properly placed can support a permanent bridge, which is a set of replacement teeth.
For those who have lost all of their upper or lower teeth, or both, one option is to receive a strategic number of implants that allow a full bridge or full denture to be permanently fixed in your mouth. Similar to a single implant, these also function and look just like a real set of natural teeth and allow you to eat, smile, and laugh the way you did before.
A dental implant is a better option for those whose gums and jaws are in good condition. As long as you practice good oral hygiene, these can last for a lifetime and are considered to be a permanent solution to having one or more missing teeth.
How do I decide?
Sometimes it can be difficult to decide which option is right for you. Here are a few things to consider when deciding between dental implants and dentures.
Most major insurance plans offer some coverage for dentures. Dental implants, however, are considered to be cosmetic treatment and only a few parts of the procedure are covered under insurance plans. Many dental offices offer some type of payment plan to make implants more affordable when insurance does not offer coverage.
Dental implants are notably more sturdy and durable than dentures because they can last you for the rest of your life. Today, dental implants are the only replacement option for missing teeth that give you the same appearance and functionality of real, natural teeth.
Dentures are not fixed to the bone, as implants are, which means they are less stable and makes it more difficult to smile or eat without worry or embarrassment. Dentures also require regular maintenance and removal, and usually have to be changed multiple times throughout your life.
Dentures tend to look bulkier and more artificial, though, with the right set properly fitted to your mouth, they can still look remarkably similar to natural teeth. Dental implants, on the other hand, have a more natural look and imitate your real teeth much more accurately.
Dental implants are fairly easy to maintain. You simply carry on the same hygiene routine that you would with your natural teeth. Flossing and brushing as normal is practically all of the upkeep implants require, whereas dentures need to be removed and properly cleaned every day. This can be an inconvenience for some people.
The Final Decision
As far as appearance and stability go, dental implants are the more favorable option. The biggest obstacle that stops most people from getting them is the cost, since it often is not covered by insurance.
Even if you’re unable to receive coverage from your insurance provider, we offer many other ways to make dental implants more affordable. Some patients choose a long-term payment plan, while others decide to do without a new car or a vacation they may have been planning so that they can receive a longer lasting benefit.
A treatment program can be split up into multiple phases, with the more important and serious needs taken care of first. It is not uncommon for a patient to choose a plan that is paid over the course of several years. All of these opportunities are offered with the goal of making treatment more affordable, so that you can choose the option that is right for you