Both dentures and dental implants are popular choices to replace missing teeth. But how do you know which option is the best one? The team at Morris County Dental Associates, a dentist in Succasunna, NJ, describes the positives and negatives of both options.
Dentures: What to Know
Dentures are usually thought of to replace an entire arch of missing teeth, but partial dentures are also available. They’re made of a metal and resin base that supports plastic or ceramic teeth. Some of the main benefits of dentures are that they’re cheaper to get upfront and you get your dental restoration faster because there’s no surgical element.
However, dentures do come with many downsides. While you may not pay as much upfront, you can incur more costs down the line. When you’re missing teeth, the jawbone starts to deteriorate. Since dentures don’t replace the tooth root, the deterioration continues in that area, even with the restoration. The dentures will start to be ill-fitting and become unusable, requiring readjustment or replacement.
Dentures only give you back around 30-40% of your bite function. They require adhesive to stay in the mouth and run the risk of slipping or falling out while eating or speaking. You’ll have to remove some foods from your diet because the dentures aren’t able to break them down. Because of the adhesive, they need to be taken out every evening and cleaned thoroughly.
The Benefits of Dental Implants
Dental implants are often considered the gold standard of tooth replacement. They’re made up of three different parts. First, a titanium implant post is placed in the jaw. Then, a piece called an abutment is added to connect the post to the final restoration. The final restoration is usually a dental crown, but implants can also support a fixed bridge or denture.
The biggest issue that comes up with implants is the cost. But while they cost more upfront, you won’t have to deal with more costs down the line. Implants are the only replacement option that replaces the tooth root. This stops any further bone degeneration and can even reverse some of the degeneration that’s already taken place.
It also takes longer for your restoration to be finalized with implants. When the posts are placed, it takes 3-6 months of healing before proceeding. But this is what gives the stability that implants are known for. During this healing process, the posts are fusing with the jawbone. Implants give you back 100% of your bite function and you don’t have to worry about the restoration moving around.
Even with many advancements in dentistry, dentures are still bulky and require a learning curve to get used to. But implants — especially with a dental crown as a final restoration — both look and feel the most natural. They don’t require any extra maintenance either. Just brush, floss, and visit the dentist regularly.
Tooth Replacement at Your Succasunna, New Jersey Dentist
Do one of these methods sound like the right choice to replace your missing teeth? Call us or schedule an appointment online.