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Introduction to Dental Implants, Pt. 2

Missing teeth ruin your smile, you confidence, and your health. The most common reason people lose their teeth is due to gum disease. In most cases, gum disease is the result when your oral health is subject to long-term neglect.

Whatever the reason, you don’t have to suffer through life without your teeth any longer, thanks to dental implants! Your Cincinnati, OH dental team at Anderson Dental Care can help you get there.

Why Are Dental Implants Better Than More Conventional Replacements? 

Provided you’re in good enough shape to get them, dental implants are a hassle-free solution. You treat your dental implants just as if they were your natural teeth. However, some choose not to go with dental implants, even if they are very good candidates, because dental implants have a higher up-front cost than other options. Even so, dental implants are the more economical choice in the long run and the treatment they provide is of much greater value than anything else available today.

Let’s compare dental implants to the other options to help you understand the difference and the advantages of dental implants.

Dental Implants and Bridges

Bridges have been around for quite awhile. Though certain aspects of bridges (and how they are installed) have changed somewhat over the years, the principle behind them is still very much the same.

A bridge replaces a missing tooth by supporting an artificial tooth; the bridge itself is held up by the teeth on either side of the gap with crowns; these teeth that do this job are called the abutment teeth.

Bridges do work well, and if you’re not a candidate for dental implants, a bridge can do a good job of replacing a missing tooth in form and function.

They do have some drawbacks, though.

Lifespan

When it comes to the “long haul”, dental implants are far superior to bridges. Even if you are extremely diligent about care and maintenance, your bridge will eventually need to be replaced. The average is a replacement every seven years in the best case scenario, but for most people, it’s only five years before the bridge must be removed and a new one put in its place.

The lifespan of a dental implant is much better! A dental implant will last decades, even a lifetime, without the need for a replacement (unless of course there is some sort of complication, but those are very rare; dental implants are estimated to have a success rate of 95%). All this requires is good oral hygiene on your part, and occasional adjustments from your dentist.

Because of the need for constant and frequent replacement, bridges are far less cost-effective than dental implants, both in monetary terms and your time as well (getting a bridge is nothing like getting an oil change, we’re sad to say).

Risk of Infection

Bridges can also put you at risk for serious problems with your oral health. To make the artificial tooth fit in the gap it is supposed to, it is common that the abutment teeth will be filed down so that the fit is secure and accurate. Filing down teeth removes a considerable amount of your teeth’s surface, and can render healthy teeth vulnerable to infections. If your tooth does become infected, the only solution is a root canal. It also increases your risk of developing periodontal (gum disease). If you develop these problems, the treatments required to address them also make have dental bridges more expensive than dental implants. On the other hand, dental implants do not require the filing or alteration of your healthy teeth whatsoever, and your risk for infection or disease remains normal.

Dental Implants and Dentures

Dentures are a form of prosthesis, and depending on how many missing teeth you have, you can get full  (if you have a lot of missing teeth) or partial (if you only have a few, or one missing tooth) sets of dentures.

Dentures have the lowest up-front cost of the solutions we’ve discussed so far, but once again, that changes when you compare the total value and the total cost of dentures to dental implants.

Slippage and Movement

Dentures for the most part do not require surgery to be installed; they’re designed to be held in place through a combination of adhesives and how the dentures fit into the mouth (they depend on your oral tissues for stability). This allows you to easily remove your dentures for cleaning or other reasons.

However, this is more of a flaw than a feature, especially when you stack up dentures next to dental implants. That dentures must be removed and cleaned is already an inconvenience that dental implants don’t have. The real problem is the tendency of dentures to move and slip out of place.

When dentures slip out of place, the consequences can range from embarrassment to infection. Dentures that slip out of place can make it harder for you to speak and chew properly, and they require you to constantly adjust them in your mouth. This continuous adjustment results in the “clicking sound” that can be heard whenever you’re speaking or talking. They can also just fall right out, which can be humiliating. This can happen at any time you’re moving your mouth and jaw: even laughing too hard can cause your dentures to slip!

Dentures that slip out frequently usually do so because they either have a poor fit or they are damaged in some way. Dentures that fit poorly interact with your oral tissues in a negative way, increasing the risk of infection and disease for your teeth (especially those that play a role in keeping the dentures in place). If you do wear dentures and they fit poorly, you need to have them replaced. Poor fit doesn’t always mean the dentures are broken; how dentures fit changes over time, as does your oral cavity: once again, dentures require frequent replacement.

Interested in Dental Implants? Find out if Dental Implants Will Work for You! 

All it takes is a phone call to potentially end the trauma of missing teeth for good!

Dial (513) 231-7755, or click here to use our online appointment form now! 

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