Do you have one or more missing teeth? If the answer is yes then you know just how much missing a tooth can impact your daily life. Missing one or more teeth can make it difficult for you to eat the foods you enjoy. And, if it is noticeable that you are missing teeth when you talk or smile, you may feel self-conscious when you interact with others. There is no denying that having teeth missing can make life more difficult. The real question is what to do about your missing teeth. Two of the main options for tooth replacement are dentures and dental implants. The two options provide the same basic function – tooth replacement – but in very different ways. In order to determine which one is right for you, you need to learn what each has to offer.
Dentures are generally used in situations where a patient is missing most or all teeth. Dentures are removable and require a specific type of care that is different than your natural teeth. If you are already missing multiple teeth then dentures may be the best option. Losing teeth – for whatever reason – will also result in bone loss in your jaw over time. Serious bone loss in the jaw makes you much less likely to be a candidate for dental implants. Dentures take on the role of replacing the structure you lost with your teeth and restoring function. A well-designed and well-fitting pair of dentures can have you smiling and eating your favorite foods again.
Dental implants are a tooth replacement option that you can treat just like your natural teeth. The implant is placed into the bone of your jaw. Eventually, the bone and implant fuse together and create a strong root. Dental implants can do the work of preventing your jawbone from deteriorating like the root of your tooth used to do. The part of the implant above the jawline functions and looks like a natural tooth. A quality dental implant can provide you with a tooth-like replacement that lasts your lifetime.
Which one is right for me?
The right tooth replacement option for you depends on a number of factors. If you are missing multiple teeth – and have been missing them for a while – dentures are the most likely choice. The bone in your jaw will start to deteriorate over time after you lose a tooth. Dental implants need a certain amount of bone for implantation which means that bone loss can take away the option of dental implants. If, however, your gums and jawbone are in good shape, you may be a candidate for dental implants.
The decision about whether you should get dentures or dental implants is one that you and your dentist will make together. There are a number of different elements that impact this decision. But the first step is to schedule a consultation with your dentist to learn about your options.