Missing Teeth? How to Choose the Best Tooth Replacement Procedure
It’s not only embarrassing to have missing teeth, it’s dangerous to your overall oral health. Even just one or two missing teeth compromise the strength of your jawbone and the alignment of your remaining teeth. Not to mention the increased threat of gum disease and decay!
Luckily, it’s easier than ever before to achieve attractive tooth replacement with dentures or implants. So which is the best choice for your smile?
What Are Implants?
Dentists use dental implants to permanently replace a missing tooth. Each implant consists of three pieces: the screw, abutment, and crown.
The base of the implant is a titanium screw inserted deep into your gum tissue, where it fuses permanently with your jawbone. By replacing missing tooth roots and bonding with the jawbone, the screw creates a sturdy base that supports the other parts of the implant.
An abutment is then placed on the titanium screw as the connector between the screw and the custom-made crown The crown is the part of the dental implant that you can see and feel since it looks and functions exactly like a real tooth.
What Are Dentures?
Dentures are lab-made dental devices that replace missing teeth using an acrylic base that mimics gum tissue to support custom-made teeth. There are three types of dentures: partial, complete, and implant-supported.
Partial dentures are dental prosthetics designed to replace a small section of your teeth and gums. Some are removable, while others are attached to neighboring teeth using crowns or bridges. In the end, partial dentures can fill in the gaps to give you a full smile once again.
While complete dentures help patients who need all teeth replaced, partial dentures replace a smaller number of teeth using the same type of device. The smaller base is designed to match the color of the gums, and the teeth are created to closely resemble existing teeth in the mouth.
There are a few different techniques used to install partial dentures, which can be permanent or removable.
Standard full-arch dentures use a high tech plastic base to replicate gum tissue and support a full set of durable, natural-looking teeth. Dentures stay in place by forming a seal with the existing natural gums, which makes it possible to remove the dentures at any time.
Many patients prefer regular dentures because they are so simple and removable. As soon as they are placed in the mouth, regular dentures create the appearance of a full, healthy, and attractive set of teeth once again.
Immediate full-arch dentures are installed into the mouth as soon as all teeth are extracted. Since many patients do not want to spend an 8 to 12 week recovery period living without any teeth at all, immediate dentures make it possible to still talk, chew, and smile normally during that time. Since the gum tissue is likely to shrink and change as it heals, immediate dentures need to be adjusted over the few months they are worn.
Long-term full-arch dentures aren’t placed into the mouth until the gum tissue has spent a few months healing. Full-arch dentures are designed to fit the new form of the gums and provide a full set of teeth that offers the functionality of a real set of teeth.
Implant-supported dentures offer a middle ground for patients who want a solution more advanced than standard dentures but not quite as complex as full implants. They are attached to at least two implants installed in the jawbone itself. This is a viable option if you have enough bone to support implants and prefer to secure your dentures with the help of such implants.
The Top 4 Benefits of Tooth Replacement With Implants
The question is, should you choose dentures or implants? Implants offer unique benefits that no other tooth replacement option achieves.
Dental Implants Last The Rest of Your Life
Unlike some tooth replacement choices, dental implants aren’t vulnerable to wear and tear. As long as you properly care for your implants, they can last the rest of your life! The titanium implants fuse with your jawbone to create a permanent base, and the durable crowns can endure any normal eating, talking, and biting activity.
Implants Look and Feel Like Real Teeth
Implants look incredibly natural and real. You can feel confident in your smile without any hesitation or uncertainty. Your friends and colleagues will wonder why you look so vibrant and happy, but they’ll never guess that your teeth aren’t your own.
Implants Protect Your Facial Bones and Oral Health
Without a full set of teeth, your jawbone doesn’t receive the stimulation it needs to remain strong. Over time, an unstimulated jawbone becomes too weak and damaged to maintain the healthy structure of your cheeks and jaw. Implants prevent this problem from occurring and keep your jawbone strong and durable.
Implants Improve Your Quality of Life
It’s no secret that missing teeth make it harder to enjoy life. Fortunately, implants solve that problem by making it easy- even effortless- to chew, talk, and smile. Steak, apples, hard pretzels, there’s no food you can’t eat. When all of these benefits combine, you’ll rediscover a sense of confidence you thought you had lost forever.
The Top 4 Benefits of Tooth Replacement With Dentures
There’s no doubt that dental implants offer impressive and exciting benefits, but they’re not the best solution for every single tooth replacement patient. As you debate whether to use dentures or implants to rebuild your smile, consider these important benefits of dentures as well.
Dentures Are Versatile
Dentures aren’t a one-size-fits-all tooth replacement solution. You can choose between traditional dentures or implant-supported dentures based upon the condition of your mouth and overall aesthetic goals. The option for implant-supported dentures opens the door to benefits like less shifting, improved jawbone strength, and easier chewing.
Dentures Are Easy to Remove and Replace
Standard dentures adhere firmly to the gum tissue but can be removed and cleaned at any time. This makes it easier to keep the gums clean.
Dentures Don’t Require Strong Jaw Bone
Implants are wonderful if you have enough jaw bone to sustain them, but many patients don’t have the amount of healthy jaw bone necessary for implants. In these cases, dentures provide an easier way to replace missing teeth. Since dentures sit along the gum tissue, they can be used to replace teeth regardless of the condition of the underlying bone.
Dentures Are Non-Invasive
Many patients also choose dentures because they want to restore their smiles without undergoing a major or invasive procedure. Dentures are relatively simple to have fitted, so you can use them to obtain a quick and more affordable tooth replacement solution.
The Bottom Line: Which One is Right For You?
This is a decision to make with the help of a dentist who specializes in tooth replacement. The team of Cincinnati dental care specialists at Beck Pearce Dental are highly trained to reconstruct your smile with customized implants and dentures.
You can trust your smile with Dr. Beck, Dr. Pearce, and their team of tooth replacement experts to restore your beautiful, vibrant smile. Call Beck Pearce Dental today to learn more and request a consultation.