Dental Implants vs. Dentures and Dental Bridges
Tooth loss is one of the most common signs of aging. According to an article in Boston magazine, by the age of 50, Americans have lost an average of 12 teeth. Poor oral health and hygiene and the occurrence of periodontal disease and tooth decay results in premature tooth loss. A newsletter that was released by the American College of Prosthodontists reveals that in America, around 178 million people are missing at least one of their teeth, and 40 million Americans are missing all of their teeth.
30% of the adults who are between the ages of 65 to 74 are missing all of their permanent teeth. But premature tooth loss does not just affect the middle-aged and seniors. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
, almost 7% of the American youth who are under the age of 17 have lost at least one of their permanent teeth because of decay.
To replace the lost teeth that have been affected by bacterial infections and led to premature tooth loss, dentists use dental devices like dentures, dental bridges, and dental implants
What are Dentures?
Dentures are a set of replacement teeth that are custom-made to look and feel just like your real teeth. This removable set of teeth can be worn throughout the day to help a person eat and talk properly and to restore their smile. The dentures are fixed on the gum tissue with the help of dental adhesives. However, during the night, dentures must be removed and soaked in lukewarm water to avoid oral infections and injuries while sleeping.
Depending on the severity of tooth loss, a person will be recommended to wear either partial dentures or full dentures. It must be noted that ill-fitted dentures can lead to serious oral injuries, and therefore, if you feel like your dentures are loose and are slipping, visit your dentist immediately to have them fixed.
Another important thing to remember while selecting dentures as the solution for the replacement of missing teeth is that wearing dentures can lead to the loss of volume in your jawbone. This causes the facial muscles to sag downwards, resulting in a gaunt-like appearance of the face. So even though in the short-term, dentures will improve a person’s smile, in the long-term, they can lead to facial deformation and sagging cheeks and chin.
What are Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are a kind of custom-made dental device that are used to replace a few of the missing teeth. Like dentures, dental bridges are removable and can be considered a quick fix for missing teeth.
Generally made from porcelain, ceramics, acrylic, or composite resin, dental bridges contain two crowns at each end, and in between the crowns are two, three, or more artificial teeth that have been aligned and fixed together to resemble your original missing teeth. Your real teeth will be used as anchors for the dental bridges because your dentist will fix the crowned ends on your real teeth.
Just like dentures, dental adhesives are used to fix the bridges on the teeth, and this is why dental bridges may come off from time to time.
What are Dental Implants?
Unlike dental bridges and dentures, dental implants are inserted inside the jawbone with the help of dental implant surgery. Dental implants are a surgical alternative for replacing missing teeth.
The dental implants become artificial roots for the new teeth that will later be fixed on them. Dental implants are small metallic screws commonly made from titanium or its alloys that have a small metal extension on top known as the abutment. While the larger part of the implant remains drilled inside the patient’s jawbone, the abutment protrudes out of the gum tissue and acts as the base on which the replacement tooth will be fixed.
Over time, dental implants fuse together with the jawbone, and because of this, implants are considered to be a non-removable and permanent solution for missing or lost teeth.
Schedule an Appointment
If you are considering any of the treatment options mentioned above for replacing your missing teeth, then visit us today at Clackamas Implant & Oral Surgery Center. Our expert team of orthodontists comprises of Brett Sullivan, DMD, MD. He will be able to provide the best treatment option for you. Call us today at (503) 662-8744
to schedule your appointment.