In the first quarter of 2020, the search term “dental implants near me” and “cost of dental implants in Canada” were trending on Google. During that same time period, the search term “dentures near me” and “dentist dentures” were also trending on Google. There are good reasons for this.
First, as the population of Canada ages, our requirements for dental care increases. Second, many of us who are aging are starting to have troubles with our teeth. Maybe we are experiencing toothaches or maybe our teeth are starting to stain and rot. Many of us want nothing more than to start off the new year with a brand-new set of teeth. The main question is: are dentures or dental implants better?
A dental implant is essentially a metal post inserted into your jawbone, imitating the root of a natural tooth. The implant post acts as an anchor upon which we can place perfectly designed replacement teeth. Some technicians design their teeth so well it looks exactly like natural teeth! Dental implants can be used to replace single or multiple teeth, supporting crowns, bridges and even dentures.
Dentures are removable prosthetic devices that replace missing teeth and the surrounding gum tissues. Complete or full dentures are used to replace teeth in the lower or upper jaw (or both) while partial dentures fill in gaps between any remaining natural teeth. Partial dentures are supported by metal clasps around remaining teeth whereas complete dentures lie directly on the gums. Dentures are made with a gum-colored acrylic base and (in the case of partial dentures) a metal clasp for extra strength and support.
Are Dental implants right for me?
Benefits of Dental Implants
- Helps stimulate and preserve jawbone and facial structure (cheeks and lips too)
- Fixed to jawbone—feels and functions like natural teeth
- Long-lasting and durable solution (can be more than 25 years)
- High up-front cost, but superior value in the long term
- Looks very close to natural teeth
- Brushing and flossing regimen is the same for regular teeth
- Does not cause speech impediments
- Helps restore chewing ability – no food limitations
Drawbacks of Dental Implants
- High initial cost
- Dental implants require a surgery for placement
- May need to replace your restorations
- You might lose bone around your implants
- Requires 1 or 2 invasive surgeries, and long recovery time (3 to 6 months)
- Dental implants have the potential to fail (studies show a 10% rate of failure)
Are Dentures right for me?
Benefits of Dentures
- More affordable option, particularly if you need to replace multiple teeth
- Can closely match gum color and comes in many different shapes, sizes and shades
- Correctly made dentures can support your facial muscles
- Easy to adjust and modifications can be made to accommodate further tooth loss
- Dentures are easily removed, which allows you to quickly and thoroughly clean them
- Non-invasive and doesn’t require any surgery
Drawbacks of Dentures
- Not as natural-looking as implants due to acrylic material
- Require higher Maintenance—must remove and clean every single night
- Can sometimes slip around, particularly as you age and jawbone changes
- More difficult to eat and talk with dentures
- Can’t eat certain foods (i.e. Tough meats, chewy foods)
- Higher risk of gum disease and teeth decay with improper maintenance
- Can be quite fragile and break easily if dropped
- Must be replaced every 3 to 6 years (versus 15-20+ years for implants)
- Over time can weaken the natural teeth supporting them