If you have one or several missing teeth, you have a couple of treatment options available to you. Two of the more popular ones are dentures or dental implants. The right one for you will depend on several factors such as your budget, how many remaining teeth you have and the health of your jawbone.
Both have their own set of pros and cons and in this post, we’ll share these to help simplify the decision-making process for you.
Why dental implants and dentures are beneficial to those with missing teeth
Both dentures and dental implants can help to:
- Restore a smile and boost self-esteem and confidence
- Improve the diet by enabling the person to eat a full and nutritious diet
- Provide support to the facial muscles
- Improve speech. Lisps can often occur when teeth are missing
Dentures and implants – The key differences
While they both offer some of the same benefits, they are significantly different in several ways. Here are the main differences between the two:
Dentures are the formal term for false teeth, and they are essentially a replica or similar to your original smile. They position onto the gums to give the appearance of a real smile. You don’t need to have a certain amount of bone to be eligible for dentures.
Dentures are removable, prosthetic teeth that can be fitted to your mouth regardless of how much bone is present. For those who have lost all their teeth, a complete denture would be required. If you have only lost some of your teeth, a partial denture would be used.
Implants are an entire tooth replacement option. They are implanted into the gum and to be eligible for this procedure, you must have a certain amount of bone for the implants to be permanently secured in to. These implants look like screws until they’ve had a crown positioned on top of them. These are called abutments. The crowns don’t normally go on top of the abutments until the bone has started to grow around them. This can take several months.
This option is much more invasive than dentures however, they are a permanent fixture and you don’t have to worry about them slipping or taking them out or putting them in each day.
The price difference
For a lot of people, the price can be the deciding factor on whether they get dentures or implants. Typically, implants are far more expensive than dentures although, if you have health cover, it may be worth looking at whether you will be covered or at least partially if you do want implants instead of dentures.
The ongoing maintenance
Once dental implants have been fitted, they are virtually the same as having real teeth in the gums and therefore require similar upkeep. You need to brush them twice daily and floss accordingly, as well as have regular checkups.
Dentures need to be removed every night and placed into a denture solution to soak. Dentures should be brushed thoroughly with a toothbrush and a denture appropriate toothpaste beforehand. Dentures may need to be refitted over time as the jaw shrinks or the bite changes.
Both dental implants and dentures are highly effective tooth replacement options and they are both safe and pose little risk. Implants have more risk associated than dentures as dentures simply nestle on the natural gum whereas implants involve a procedure that involves downtime and some pain. Infections may occur and other complications may arise, such as implants that become loose or crowns may crack.
The worst complications you could expect from dentures would be ulcers or sores in the mouth or gums and them slipping out of position.
Deciding whether dentures or implants will be the better option for you
Here are some important factors to consider when deciding whether dentures or dental implants are the best choices for you:
How much time you are willing to put into hygiene
If having to take out your dentures often to give them a thorough clean is not something you’ll want to have to contend with, implants may be a more sensible choice. While they are more expensive, they are far less work to look after daily.
How old you are can influence your choice. If you have only just approached your senior years, investing in implants can be worthwhile as you’ll get plenty of use out of them. If you are heading towards the later stages of your life, spending the money on implants may not be worth the investment. It depends on your specific needs and budget and how important it is to have as close to real teeth as possible.
Your bone density
As mentioned, to be a good candidate for implants, you need to have a certain amount of jawbone present to support the posts.
Which is the better choice for you?
The best way to decide whether dental implants or dentures are a better choice is by booking a consultation with a prosthetist. They’ll be able to conduct the necessary exams and tests to determine whether you are a good candidate for implants or whether dentures would suit you and your needs better.
Implants are more expensive however, once they have healed they are the closest thing to having a full set of natural teeth again. Gold Coast Dentures are an affordable option that can give you the same look as implants. For more information, contact us here at Denture Care Professionals Australia.