As a dental practice that offers both dental implants and dentures, we’re often asked about the best ways to replace missing teeth. The tooth replacement options you explore with our dentists will ultimately depend on your oral health, budget, and personal preference.
Let’s take a look at the differences between getting dentures and getting dental implants. Our West Michigan restorative dentists are happy to answer any questions you may have about either procedure.
Dentures are an oral appliance made to look and function like natural teeth. We can help you explore the different types of dentures available, including partial, complete, conventional, and immediate dentures.
Depending on the extent of tooth loss, our dentists may recommend a full or partial denture. While a full denture replaces an entire arch of teeth, a partial denture only replaces a few teeth.
Dentures sit on top of your gums and must be removed before you go to sleep so your gums have a chance to recover. When you’re not wearing your dentures, they’ll need to be submerged in a glass of water or denture cleanser so they don’t dry out, crack, and warp.
A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth root (typically made of titanium) that’s placed in your jaw to later support a crown.
Many patients appreciate that dental implants look and function like natural teeth. This means that you’ll be able to continue eating your favorite foods without worrying about slipping dentures.
Take care of your dental implants like you would natural teeth by brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once daily.
While dentures are more affordable than dental implants, they don’t solve the problem of jawbone deterioration.
As soon as your body detects a missing tooth, it’ll start to absorb the minerals in your jaw to use elsewhere. Once this happens, the area of the jaw where the tooth root used to be weakens and deteriorates. Teeth adjacent to the gap will also start to tilt toward the open space. Eventually, the patient may experience facial collapse, which alters the shape of the face and makes it difficult to wear dentures.
The best way to prevent further tooth loss and jawbone deterioration is to ask our dentists if you’re a candidate for the dental implant procedure. In general, we recommend dental implants whenever possible so patients can avoid long-term health issues caused by missing teeth.
You’re a candidate for the dental implant procedure if you have healthy gum tissue and sufficient bone density in your jaw to place the implant. For successful osseointegration, there has to be enough jawbone tissue to support the titanium dental implant that’s placed in your jawbone.
Our dental implant dentists will be able to determine if you’re a likely candidate for the dental implant procedure. Even if you’re not a candidate for dental implants, we can help you explore your other tooth replacement options.
Our team at MI Smiles Dental is proud to offer tooth replacement options, such as dental implants and dentures, to help patients smile with confidence. With four practices in West Michigan, we have the capability of handling all of your family’s dental needs. To schedule an appointment, call MI Smiles Dental at (616) 974-4990.
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