Having missing teeth isn’t fun; not only does it cause the rest of your teeth to shift out of position, it also hinders your oral function, preventing you from eating or speaking comfortably. Fortunately, there are numerous tooth restoration methods available that can give you a full set of teeth again, with two options—dental implants and dentures—standing out for the many advantages they offer. Below, we’ll discuss both orthodontic solutions and their differences to help you decide which dental restoration method suits you best.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are dental restoration devices designed to provide a durable tooth replacement solution for those with one or more missing teeth. They are surgically implanted into the jawbone, fixed with an abutment, and covered with a crown to mimic the structure and function of natural teeth.
The implant is a small, screw-like fixture typically made of titanium, a biocompatible material. It serves as the artificial tooth root and provides a stable foundation for the replacement tooth.
What are Dentures?
Dentures are custom-made, removable dental restorative devices that help to replace missing teeth. With them, you’ll be able to speak, chew, and smile confidently again.
Full dentures and partial dentures are the two types of dentures that can be used to fill the gaps left by missing teeth. When a patient has lost all of their natural teeth in either the upper or lower jaw, or both, full dentures are used, whereas partial dentures are used when there are still some natural teeth left.
Dental Implants vs Dentures
1. Method of Attachment
Dental implants are surgically embedded into the jawbone while dentures are removable appliances that rely on suction, adhesives, or clips to stick to the gums.
2. Stability and Functionality
Implants are similar to natural teeth, offering exceptional stability without slipping or movement. Dentures, however, are less stable and patients may experience challenges with it during eating and speaking.
Implants can be customised to closely mimic the appearance of your natural teeth, providing a seamless and lifelike smile. While modern dentures can look rather natural too, they may not look as real as dental implants do.
Regular brushing and flossing is sufficient to maintain the cleanliness and condition of dental implants. Dentures, however, need to be removed daily for cleaning. Some may even have to be soaked overnight in a denture cleaner.
Implants can last up to a lifetime if taken care of properly, while dentures typically have shorter lifespans and may need to be replaced every 5 to 10 years.
6. Bone Health
Implants are able to help stimulate the jawbone and prevent bone loss over time, maintaining bone density. Wearing dentures does not provide the same level of bone stimulation. Eventually, the jawbone may undergo resorption, potentially affecting your facial profile and the fit and comfort of the dentures.
Dental implants tend to have a higher upfront cost compared to dentures because they involve complex procedures. However, their longevity can make them a more cost-effective choice. For those on a budget, dentures will be a more ideal option because they are generally more affordable.
Want to reap the benefits of both dental implants and dentures? There are implant-supported dentures that combine the stability and support of implants with the convenience of dentures. These are significantly more stable than traditional dentures, and allow for confident chewing and speaking without worrying about slippage.
Tooth Stories is a dental clinic in Singapore offering a variety of orthodontic solutions for issues with missing teeth. Learn more about our services here.