On average, American adults aged 20-64 only have 24.92 teeth (out of 28-32, depending on whether they’ve had their wisdom teeth removed).
Another 3.75 percent of adults in this age bracket have no remaining teeth at all. The same is true of 27.27 percent of seniors over the age of 65.
Are you dealing with partial or complete tooth loss? Are you interested in correcting the problem?
If so, the two most popular options available to you are dentures and dental implants.
Not sure where you stand on the dentures vs implants debate?
Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of each and figure out which one is right for you.
What are Dentures?
Dentures are restorative dentistry procedure.
They come in two styles — full and partial. For those who are missing all of the teeth on their upper or lower jaw, full dentures are a good solution. Those who are only missing some of their teeth may benefit from partial dentures.
Dentures can be removed for cleaning and should also be removed at night before going to bend.
What are Implants?
Dental implants are another restorative dentistry procedure. They’re usually intended for those who are only missing a few teeth.
Dental implants are comprised of a titanium implant, which resembles a screw. The dentist places this implant into the jaw. Once it heals, it will bond directly to the jaw bone. The dentist then covers the implant with a crown that resembles a natural tooth.
Dentures Pros and Cons
There are definite pros to choosing dentures over implants, but there are drawbacks as well. The following are some factors you might want to consider if you’re leaning toward choosing dentures:
One of the greatest benefits of dentures is the relative speed with which the treatment process takes place. If you decide that dentures are the best option for you, you can have your teeth restored in just a few weeks.
Not only is the treatment process for dentures very short, but it’s also surgery-free and doesn’t require much from the patient in terms of preparation. This makes dentures a very good option for older adults who want a low-maintenance solution to their tooth loss.
The technology for designing dentures has improved quite a bit over the last several years. As a result, dentures also have a very natural look. When you wear and fully adjust to them, no one will have any idea that the teeth they see are not your own.
Dentures are more affordable up front than dental implants, too. For those who are working with a limited budget, they’re a lower-cost solution.
One of the biggest complaints about dentures is that they take some getting used to. Some people find that they have trouble eating, speaking, and carrying out other activities during the first few weeks after they start wearing their dentures.
If you don’t want to deal with this discomfort or the temporary changes dentures can make to the way you speak and eat, dentures might not be for you.
Dentures also require regular cleaning, and you’ll need to remember to take them out every night.
They’re a lower-maintenance solution initially since the treatment process is shorter. They become higher-maintenance later, though, since you have to stay on top of cleaning and caring for them.
Dentures also are not permanent. You’ll need to have them replaced every 5-8 years, which can get expensive.
Implants Pros and Cons
If you think implants are a better fit for you, it’s important to make sure you understand the pros and cons that they bring to the table as well. Here are some essential pieces of information everyone ought to know about dental implants:
Dental implants feel exactly like your natural teeth. For those who don’t want to deal with the adjustment period that comes with dentures, implants are a great option.
Implants function just like your natural teeth, too. You’ll be able to chew and eat whatever you like once the surgery is complete and they’ve fully healed.
As you age, your jaw bone starts to weaken. Implants help to combat this weakness, though, and add more support and structure to the jaw. This can help to minimize the risk of additional tooth loss or serious jaw changes as you get older.
Dental implants are lower maintenance than dentures, too. You can brush and floss them just like you would your natural teeth. There’s no need to worry about removing them every night before bed or regularly purchasing cleaning solution for them.
One of the biggest downsides to dental implants is the fact that they’re more expensive than dentures. When you really think about it, though, that’s not entirely true.
You pay more money up front for implants, but you spend less later on in terms of maintenance. With implants, you don’t have to buy cleaning solution or pay for regular refittings and replacements. You could end up saving money by investing in implants now.
The treatment process for dental implants also takes longer than the treatment process for dentures. It takes several months for the implant to fuse with your jawbone and be ready for the crown.
Most people find that the results they get form implants are well worth the wait. If you’re a very impatient person, though, you might be frustrated by the duration of treatment.
Dentures vs Implants: Which Will You Choose?
As you can see, there’s not a clear winner in the dentures vs implants debate.
Dentures are a good option for folks who don’t want to spend a lot of money up front and who prefer a shorter treatment time.
Implants are a good fit for folks who want a more natural-feeling result and don’t mind a higher upfront investment when it results in less money spent over time.
Do you know which option is the right fit for you?
Whether you still need help deciding or you’re ready to go ahead and move forward with restoring your teeth, we’re here for you at Columbia Pike Dentistry.
Contact us today to learn more about the services we offer or to schedule a consultation.