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Dentures vs Implants


Elderly woman enjoying her new smileTooth loss is a serious issue. It can happen as a result of advanced gum disease, facial trauma, bruxism, and more. No matter how it happens, missing teeth affect every single aspect of your life. The things you once did with ease, such as eating and speaking, suddenly become much more difficult. Your jaw begins to change shape, and any remaining teeth you have started to shift, throwing off your bite. This issue also leads to the altering of your facial shape, which causes you to appear older. The more teeth you lose, the worse these issues become. Traditionally, dentures have been used to replace an entire arch of missing teeth. They can also be made to replace sections of missing teeth. While they are still available today, there is also another option – dental implants. At Summit Dental Group, we offer both of these solutions to restore your missing teeth.

Dentures


Dentures have been used for hundreds of years to replace a full arch of missing teeth. Over the years, many improvements have been made, and they are vastly different from the blatantly fake looking restorations they used to be. Today’s dentures look much more natural. Dentures are removable prosthetic restorations that consist of acrylic resin teeth set into an acrylic, gum-colored base. The base is supported by your gums. Dentures can be made to replace an entire arch of missing teeth (full dentures) or sections of missing teeth (partial dentures). Partial dentures also have metal clasps that attach to your healthy teeth, which provide additional support.

Pros and Cons of Dentures


Dentures have a few benefits, including:
•  They appear more natural and are less bulky than their earlier counterparts.
•  They restore the functions of your mouth, making it easier to bite, chew, and speak.
•  Your smile is restored.

There are also a few drawbacks to dentures as well:
•  They require a significant amount of daily maintenance.
•  They can slip out of place, causing both embarrassment and painful denture sores.
•  They can be uncomfortable, and restrict blood flow to your gums.
•  Dentures cannot stop bone loss in the jaw. This means that your dentures will need to be replaced every so often - approximately every seven years.

Dental Implants


Implants are the newest option available for replacing missing teeth. They are unlike any other dental restoration out there. Implants consist of three major components, the implant (a small, titanium rod), the abutment (the connector), and the crown (your replacement tooth). Implants can be used to replace any number of missing teeth, from one to all. The number of implants needed depends on your specific situation. Typically, an implant-supported denture, which replaces an entire arch of missing teeth, is supported by 6 to 8 implants, although it can be supported on as little as 4. An implant supported bridge, which replaces a section of missing teeth, is supported by one or more. Implants require a surgical procedure for placement, during which the titanium rods are inserted into the jawbone. Your jawbone fuses with the titanium as you heal, creating a strong, stable, permanent support for your replacement teeth.

Pros and Cons of Dental Implants


Dental implants have numerous benefits, including:
•  Greater comfort.
•  They are permanent.
•  No extra maintenance is needed. They can be brushed and flossed just like your natural teeth.
•  The titanium rods stop the bone loss that accompanies tooth loss, which helps to maintain the strength and integrity of your jaw.

There are also a few disadvantages to implants as well:
•  They are more expensive.
•  They require a surgical procedure.
•  Healing can take several months depending on how many implants are placed.
•  You need to have sufficient bone mass to support the proper fusion of the jawbone to the implants. While All-on-4 is an option, sometimes a bone graft, which is another surgical procedure, is needed first.

Replacing missing teeth is essential for restoring your oral health, your smile, and your general quality of life. Contact Summit Dental Group to schedule your consultation and find out which option is best for you.
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