Should You Get Dental Implants?

Dental implants are popular choices among those who experience tooth loss. However, artificial teeth come in all shapes and sizes. From dentures and implants to bridges and veneers, you have many options for strong, natural-looking tooth alternatives. 

For some, dental implants cost a hefty chunk of change that might make them out of reach. Others may have a hard time finding the right dentures to fit their teeth. Before settling on any one type of artificial tooth, be sure you have your facts straight.

Find everything you need to know about artificial teeth by reading the following sections. 

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are semi-permanent solutions for tooth loss. Millions of Americans experience tooth loss or decay in their adult lives. Instead of a temporary solution, many adults seek a long-term fix that gives them confidence and peace of mind. 

They are made of a few key components, including:

  • A screw-like implant
  • An abutment (connector)
  • A crown
Together, these components provide individuals with similar strength and durability as their natural teeth. Implants must be surgically inserted into the jawbone. To be a good candidate for implants, patients must have a strong jawbone that can support the screw. 

Crowns are custom-made artificial teeth that are attached to the very end of the implant. The total cost of an implant consists of all three components. 

What Are Dentures?

Dentures have been around for ages. When adults are missing most or all of their top and bottom teeth, dentures offer a temporary and removable solution that helps with speaking and eating. They are custom-made using molds of the teeth and jawbone. 

Partial dentures are great options for those who have a few missing teeth but still have several natural teeth in good health. Like conventional dentures, they can be inserted and removed whenever necessary. 

Maintaining dentures is a bit of a hassle. Unlike implants, they must constantly be removed and cleaned to ensure optimal performance. Individuals likely need to replace or reline their dentures over a period of several years. 

Advantages of Dental Implants

Dental implants are extremely similar to natural teeth. Due to the surgical process, they are just as stable and strong as real teeth. Individuals who choose to get implants do not have to worry about removing or inserting their teeth at certain times of the day. 

While dental implants cost more money than dentures or other alternatives, they are the most permanent solution to tooth loss. Those who choose to get to dentures may find themselves purchasing new sets throughout the duration of their lives. As teeth shift and change, new denture molds must be created.

Dental implants are also easier to maintain over the long term and preserve the jawbone better than other alternatives. Because they are surgically inserted into the bone, they provide more stability and stimulation.

Advantages of Dentures

Dentures are another popular alternative for real teeth. Unlike implants, these are not permanent solutions and can easily be removed whenever need be. Dentists create an identical mold of the teeth and jaw to construct artificial teeth that individuals can insert and remove at their discretion. 

They cost much less than implants as they are not surgically implanted into the jawbone. It is the most cost-effective option for those experiencing loss of teeth. Those who cannot afford implants can gain peace of mind and self-confidence by using dentures. 

Partial dentures are available for those who are missing just one or a few teeth, but still have several natural teeth remaining in the upper or lower jaw. They replace certain gaps that individuals may have in their teeth without sacrificing the natural teeth they still have.

Dental Implants Procedure: Is It Right For You?

Unlike dentures, those considering dental implants must consult an oral surgeon before any decision can be made. Surgery is a big deal, and while the procedure is minimally invasive, it is important to understand the steps and risks before making a choice. 

The entire procedure is split into three parts, which consists of a consultation, an evaluation and the surgery itself. Most patients undergo a consultation with their regular dentist. He or she will discuss the patient’s overall fitness for surgery as well as the need for implants. 

Patients will consult a surgeon for the evaluation portion of the procedure only after their regular dentist suggests surgery. The evaluation consists of a few exams, such as:

  • Tooth and jaw x-rays
  • Molds
  • Jawbone strength tests