Dr. Durning Moore offers many replacement options to his patients missing several or even all of their teeth. Removable dentures have traditionally been used to replace missing teeth but with advances in dental technology, dental implants have become the more popular solution. Our Charlotte, NC dentist office offers both options. Dr. Moore will recommend dental implants to patients that qualify for them because they are the closest thing to natural teeth.
Dental Implants vs Dentures
A denture is a set of false teeth that are custom made to fit comfortably in your mouth. Complete dentures replace an entire row of teeth while partial dentures replace one or more teeth in an arch. Full dentures are made of a plastic base that is similar to the color of gum tissue so they blend in. Attached to the base are false teeth. The base holds the teeth in place by forming a seal with the gums. Partial dentures are made a gum colored plastic base which is sometimes connected to a metal framework. They are designed to stay in place with clasps that are formed around the remaining teeth.
A patient with missing teeth will have a sunken in look on their face if they do not replace their teeth. Dentures can successfully hold the shape of your face and will also prevent remaining teeth from shifting towards the voids. Patients will also be able to eat and speak better than they did with fewer or no teeth. Dentures are fairly inexpensive and the process to get them takes under a month. Having dentures placed does not require surgery.
There are many cons to choosing dentures though, especially when compared to dental implants. Removable dentures will not replace the tooth at the root and this will cause the patient to slowly suffer from bone loss. There is an adjustment period to get used to them and many people just do not find them comfortable. All denture wearers will have to have them adjusted, rebased or replaced over time. They also come with many diet restrictions such as avoiding sticky foods. Many patients report that their dentures slip around in the mouth which leads to slurred speech and difficulty eating. There are a few types that require adhesive to stay securely in place.
Dental implants are actually metal posts that are surgically placed in the jaw bone. The implants will need a period of time to heal and fuse completely with the surrounding bone. After about three to six months, the denture can be secured to the implants. Anywhere from four to eight implants can be used to hold a set of false teeth.
Dental implants have a very high success rate and just about anyone over the age of 18 can get them. They are better for your oral health because the implant replaces the tooth at the root. Because they replace the tooth root, they are the only replacement option that can prevent bone loss. They will permanently hold the shape of your face, avoiding that sunken in look. Since they are surgically placed, the denture is very durable and stable. It will not slip around in the mouth and there is very little to no food restrictions. This also allows for better speech. Implant dentures look and feel just like natural teeth. They are much easier to care for and, if done properly, can last a lifetime. Implant dentures have a much higher patient satisfaction rating than removable dentures.
The placement of the dental implants is a surgical procedure and the patient must be healthy enough to undergo this. Denture implants come with a much higher price tag when compared to removable dentures and the process to get them takes much longer. The entire process can take four to nine months and sometimes longer if pre-treatments such as bone grafting are necessary.