Dental Implants Compared to Dentures
Dental Implants Compared to Dentures
Dental problems sometimes seem like a never-ending battle. Patients sometimes come to see their dentists, and out of exasperation want their final teeth removed, to rid themselves of ongoing dental problems. Ever hear the phrase, “Be careful what you wish for’? Everyone has. What too often comes next, after teeth are lost, are dentures. Sure, they never need fillings or root canals, but too often denture-wearers realize they’ve walked the proverbial plank into the “black hole” of dentistry, a place from which there is no return, once they’ve lost their teeth.
Thanks to advances in modern medicine and dentistry, there is a way back! A way back to what could be even a better smile than the one they had! It is important you have your tooth/teeth replaced as soon as possible so you can continue talking, eating without problems and smiling. Once when teeth were lost, you had only one option, removable replacements, dentures. Not any more! Now you can have fixed-in-place, non-removable teeth that can look and function like your God-given teeth!
Below are a few things you can expect with each option:
Dentures technology has changed very little in hundreds of years, except now they are made of plastic. Full or complete dentures serve as removable replacements for all the teeth, while partial dentures only fill in gaps while some natural teeth remain.
Some advantages of dentures include:
- Dentures are generally cheap to purchase, particularly if you wish to replace multiple teeth.
- Correctly-made dentures appear life-like and support the lips and cheeks, so the face does not immediately look as if it is collapsing inwards, but over time, shrinkage/collapsing will naturally occur!
Some drawbacks of dentures include:
- It is recommended that patients remove the dentures at night because gum tissue was not meant to be covered by the artificial, plastic material 24/7.
- Over time dentures will get loose, slipping and sliding. This can cause embarrassing social instances at restaurants and public locations.
- The clasps of partial dentures will scrape on neighboring natural teeth, which over time, can cause them to get loose or require them to be crowned, or capped.
- Dentures can cause discomfort when talking and eating. Adversely-affected speech can lead to social problems, and lack of self-confidence.
- There are restrictions on the types of food you can eat with dentures. These restrictions can make it difficult, and sometimes impossible, for you to maintain a healthy, balanced diet and prevent you from enjoying your favorite foods. Excessive weight gain is the leading cause of Type II diabetes in our country today.
- Gooey/sticky adhesives used in dentures can cause inconveniences and have led to documented medical/neurologic complications.
Dental implants anchor realistic-looking replacement teeth and are placed surgically into your jaws. Unlike dentures, implants do not require the use of any adhesives and can be the most comfortable and natural-looking option for patients who desire fixed-in-place tooth replacement.
Some advantages of full-sized dental implants include:
- Dental implants can be highly realistic-looking and can function like normal teeth. They do not have adhesives, hence patients can talk and eat without feeling uncomfortable.
- With dentures, over time the jaws will shrink which will cause a loss of facial support, leading to a drooping, sunken, older appearance. However, dental implants help you maintain your natural face shape and smile so you appear confident wherever you go, by preventing jawbone shrinkage.
- With implants, patients do not need to be restricted to mushy/softer foods like with dentures, but can eat/enjoy their favorite healthy foods with ease.
- While dentures may slip while you talk, eat or smile, dental implants always retain their position, because implants are biologically-fused to the bone.
- Full sized dental implants (not mini-implants) allow your jawbone to be preserved, giving a full and more youthful appearance, so you can smile at others with confidence. Full sized implants are the only biologic-mimicking restoration option that can preserve natural jawbones.
- Dental implants are anchored within the jaw, and do not affect the surrounding teeth. They also prevent healthy teeth from drifting out of place.
Since implants are designed to last a lifetime, they can be a good long-term investment in your overall health and self-esteem, making them a worthwhile investment. Consult with your dentist’s office as they can help your figure out a plan to help maintain your dental health along with confidence in your restored, improved smile.