If you must choose between dentures and dental implants, it pays to find out all you can about each option. Doing so ensures that you make a choice that is informed and likely to be satisfying in the years to come. Sit down with your dentist and ask these five questions. Once you have the answers, making a choice will be a lot easier.
Can Anyone Get Implants?
Not everyone is a candidate for dental implants. Before your dental professional will move forward with this procedure, expect for the bone density of your jaw to be tested. The goal is to make sure the bone is healthy and strong enough to support the implants.
Don’t be discouraged if the bone structure is not quite strong enough. There are procedures that will help reinforce the bones and make implants a possibility. Your dentist can determine if you are a candidate for those procedures. Assuming everything goes as planned, a second examination will confirm you are ready for implants.
Will They Hurt?
There is no ongoing discomfort associated with implants. You can expect some soreness and swelling in the days immediately following the installation. Many people find that using an over the counter pain reliever is all they need. If something stronger is required, your dentist can provide a prescription. In any case, you will find that your discomfort goes away as the swelling and inflammation begin to subside.
How Will I Care For Them?
Caring for your implants is a lot like taking care of natural teeth. You will still brush after meals and use mouthwash daily. One difference in your routine is that the dentist is likely to discourage the use of dental floss.
Your natural teeth have a thin membrane around the gum line. That membrane is not present at the base of the crowns or caps that cover your implants. Without that membrane, it would be easier for the floss to scratch the gum and cause bleeding. If you are fine with not flossing, simply omit it from your daily dental hygiene regimen. Should you want to floss, follow the instructions your dentist provides to the letter.
Remember you still need to come in for an annual examination and have your teeth cleaned at least once a year. That provides a chance for the dentist to check the implants and caps and ensure everything is still in fine condition.
How Long Will They Last?
Unlike dentures, implants can last the rest of your life. You may crack a cap, but it can be replaced with ease. Unless you are involved in a serious accident, the chances of needing to remove and replace an implant are quite small.
What About the Cost?
Implants do cost more up front. Considering how long they last, you save money as the years pass. Compare the cost of investing in a new set of dentures every five years and compare that to implants that last for a lifetime. It won’t take long to see how the implants are more cost-effective.
Your dentist can tell you many more things about implants. Ask any other questions that come to mind and listen closely to the answers. It will be easy to see which solution is right for you.