No matter hard you might try, sometimes you can’t keep your teeth forever. Even if you have the best tooth care regimen in the world, your genetics might mean you lose your original teeth before you are ready to be done with them. However, any tooth that is lost or pulled needs to be replaced by something. One lost tooth can mean your whole facial integrity is compromised. The remainder of your teeth will slowly begin to shift which can affect not just your smile, but how you eat, the way your face looks, and even your overall oral health.
Typically to prevent any shifting from a lost tooth or several lost teeth, something new must be put in to replace it. There are two primary options – dental implants or dentures. However, what, if any, difference is there between the two?
- Dentures – While many people imagine dentures as an option only for after you have lost all your teeth, partial sets of dentures can be used if you still have some natural teeth. Dentures are designed to look like teeth and gums and will actually sit in your mouth during the day, but should be removed at night.
- Dental Implants – Unlike dentures, dental implants are permanent and cannot be taken out. With implants, dentists will put an implant of titanium or zirconium into the socket and fuse it to the jawbone to serve as a root. The implant is then capped with a crown or bridge to provide a cosmetic dental option that looks little different from an actual tooth.
Why Dental Implants Are Preferable?
It is obvious at even a glance which is the better option. While dentures used to be the standard, we have all heard the complaints about them for those that have to wear them. Dental implants are preferable in almost every possible way, which includes:
- They’re Permanent – This is the biggest advantage. Dentures are made from synthetic materials that look realistic, but you have to take them eventually. A dental implant sits in your mouth exactly like a real tooth, but it will last much longer.
- More Comfortable – The biggest complaints about dentures is that you cannot eat certain tough to chew foods and there might be occasions where your dentures slip while talking, affecting speech in an embarrassing way. Not only might you have to readjust dentures in the middle of your day, but it is quite the strange sensation wearing them at first. Dental implants have no such problems since they mimic natural teeth.
- Easier to Clean – Cleaning a dental implant is as simple as brushing your teeth regularly. Dentures need to be removed and undergo special cleaning procedures, which in itself opens up room for mistakes. However, everyone knows how to brush their teeth which makes keeping a dental implant clean a breeze.
- Prevents Gum Erosion – One of the biggest issues with dentures is if you lack natural teeth, your gums will begin to erode and become flabby. This in turn can lead to bone loss in your jaw, leading to premature aging. However, with dental implants, you don’t need natural teeth because the implants serve the same purpose.
Is There Ever a Right Time for Dentures?
Obviously the dental implant is preferable in almost every possible way, but is there a time where dentures might be the right option? Yes!
The major downside to dental implants is the price. If you are at a point where you are having multiple teeth pulled or even all of them, getting them all replaced with dental implants might be a little out of your price range. In this situation, dentures can be a viable option. However, if you are losing just one or two teeth at a time, having them replaced with dental implants as needed is the better way to go.