Dental Implants vs Dentures: Understanding your options for missing teeth

At JJS Dentistry, we understand that having missing teeth can significantly affect your confidence and quality of life. Fortunately, there are two popular solutions for replacing missing teeth: dental implants and dentures

If you’ve lost a few (or all) teeth and are looking for your next best option, we have expert advice to help you make an informed decision.

What are dental implants and dentures?

Before diving into which is best, let’s first understand each dental solution.

Dental implants

Implants are a long-term, fixed solution for missing teeth. They consist of a titanium post surgically placed into the jawbone to replace your tooth root. An abutment is placed on the post, and then a custom-made crown is fitted onto the abutment, resulting in a natural-looking and fully functional tooth replacement.

Dentures

When you hear ‘dentures,’ you may think of senior citizens and their false teeth. But dentures come in all sorts. They are removable prosthetic devices designed to replace multiple missing teeth. Dentures can be partial (replacing a few missing teeth) or complete (replacing all the natural teeth). Aesthetic-wise, dentures consist of a gum-coloured base made of acrylic with artificial teeth attached.

Understanding the benefits and disadvantages of dental implants and dentures

When it comes to deciding which is better, we’re comparing dental implants and dentures in terms of comfort, functionality, appearance and maintenance.

1. Comfort

Dental implants feel more like natural teeth, as they are anchored securely in the jawbone. This eliminates the discomfort and slippage that can sometimes occur with dentures.

Dentures may initially feel awkward, but most patients adjust to them over time.

2. Functionality

Dental implants provide a stronger bite force compared to dentures, allowing you to eat a wider variety of foods without difficulty.

Dentures may limit your food choices, making it challenging to chew hard or sticky foods.

3. Appearance

Both dental implants and dentures can offer a natural-looking appearance. However, dental implants have the advantage of preventing jawbone deterioration, which can cause a sunken facial appearance over time.

Dentures may not provide the same level of support to the facial structure as they sit on top of the gums.

4. Maintenance

Dental implants require similar maintenance to natural teeth, including regular brushing, flossing and dental check-ups. 

Dentures, however, require additional cleaning steps, such as soaking overnight in a denture solution and handling with care to prevent breakage.

Things to consider when choosing between dental implants and dentures

There are several factors to think about when deciding how to fill your missing teeth:

1. Cost

Dental implants generally have a higher upfront cost than dentures. However, they are a long-term investment in your oral health, often lasting a lifetime with proper care.

Dentures may have an initial lower cost, but they require periodic adjustments and replacements, potentially leading to long-term expenses.

2. Candidacy

Only some people are suitable candidates for dental implants. Patients must have adequate jawbone density and be in good oral health. 

Dentures are a more accessible option for those who may not qualify for dental implants due to medical conditions, bone loss, or budget constraints.

3. Personal choice

Ultimately, the decision to pick dental implants or dentures will come down to your personal preferences and lifestyle.

Some patients may prioritise the permanence and comfort of dental implants, while others may prefer the non-surgical and removable nature of dentures.

When considering dental implants or dentures, it’s always best to chat with a dental professional to discuss your individual needs and concerns.

At JJS Dentistry, our experienced team will guide you through the decision-making process and recommend the best solution for your oral health and smile.

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