Why You Should Upgrade from Dentures to Dental Implants
Posted on 12/22/2019 by Mountain State Oral and Facial Surgery
| While dentures have been the go-to strategy for replacing missing teeth for decades, they are not a perfect solution for everyone. The nightly cleaning, soreness or rawness in the gums from food entrapment, and the bulky feeling coupled with the occasional sliding are just a few woes. Not to mention that the older your pair of dentures are, the more vulnerable your teeth are to tooth decay, gingivitis, plaque build-up, and the loss of your remaining healthy teeth.
Long-term Problems with Dentures
A reliance on dentures leads to bone loss over time. This is because once you lose your teeth, your body recognizes that you no longer have tooth roots in your jawbone that require support. As a result, your jawbone density diminishes. Once your jawbone starts to shrink, dentures can start to become too big to fit properly, furthering discomfort. Another drawback of dentures and bone loss is facial collapse. Essentially, facial collapse is when your face starts to sag and look shriveled up because your jawbone doesn’t have enough density to support your facial muscles. This accelerates the look of aging in your face, which can take a blow to your confidence.
Statistics published by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons find that more than 30 million Americans have lost all their teeth in one jaw or both. With tooth loss being such a prevalent issue, there must be a better solution for the people whose dentures don’t align nicely.
Dental Implants as a Solution
That solution is dental implants, replacement tooth roots that look and function like natural teeth. Dental implants are a popular, effective, and satisfying tooth replacement option that relieves the traditional problems associated with dentures. Since dental implants are natural-looking, they provide a host of cosmetic benefits as well. Let’s dive into some of the specific benefits of replacing your current dentures with dental implants.
A Durable, Permanent Set of Teeth
When properly cared for, dental implants can last a lifetime! In contrast, dentures often must be replaced every 3 to 5 years, which really adds up in price and the inconvenience of getting your dentures refitted over time. If you’ve ever experienced any chipping or cracking with the more fragile dentures, then you’ll quickly be empowered to pursue foods that you used to have to avoid or required you to temporarily remove your dentures.
Low Maintenance for Oral Hygiene
Just as dental implants appear like regular teeth, they need the same amount of care. Brush twice a day, floss, and make regular dental appointments and you’re on the right path to lifetime maintenance. No more soaking your set in a cup of warm water or cleaning your prosthetic teeth after every meal. You also don’t have to deal with the hassle of applying dental adhesive, the unsavory taste that occurs when it leaks, or the frustration that follows if you’ve applied too much adhesive and are ready to retire your dentures for the night.
This Denture Replacement Supports your Jawbone Health
Since dental implants are fixed, they won’t accelerate gum recession but rather help maintain bone and support the health of remaining teeth. Dental implants have the same effect as tooth roots, which means that dental implants will fuse with your jawbone over a period of months, so they actually become a permanent part of your body. Unlike dentures, your implants will stimulate your jaws when you chew, which will help to preserve bone and prevent gum recession.
Do not despair if your jawbone has already started to shrink! This issue is common and often detected because a patient’s dentures have started to feel too large. While no decisions would be made without a thorough consultation, there is a chance you will need a bone graft.
A bone graft is the surgical procedure that uses transplanted bone to repair bone loss in the jaw. This procedure stimulates the bone growth needed to reshape the jaw, which allows it to support an implant. Bone grafting is a relatively simple procedure; it just takes some time for the new bone to fuse to the old, reinforcing and strengthening it. We have plenty of other information about bone grafting if you want to explore further.
Improved Quality of Life
When you’ve experienced the awkward, or perhaps loose, feeling of dentures, that self-consciousness you might feel when smiling, laughing or even sneezing disappears with dental implants. Since dental implants fuse with your jawbone, you don’t have to suffer the embarrassment of them slipping, which often leads to wearers having to mumble or slur their words. It’s also much easier to chew when artificial teeth aren’t sliding around, which is another reason to find yourself biting into foods you’ve had to avoid for years! Since you won’t experience facial collapse from lack of jaw support, then you also won’t feel any additional stress over your appearance.
Making the Switch
If you currently wear dentures and are considering switching to dental implants, our board-certified, highly trained surgeons would be happy to advise you on what procedure best fulfills your needs. Please contact our office today to arrange your consultation.