Implant or Removable Prosthesis?

Northampton prosthodontistNorthampton, MA – Sometimes in dentistry, even a tooth cannot be restored. In that case, there are a couple of options –dental implants or removable prostheses, such as dentures. But is one better than the other?

First, let’s discuss dental implants, which are placed by a prosthodontist or trained dentist.

When a tooth cannot be restored, it needs to be replaced once it has been removed for both functional and esthetic reasons. A dental implant acts as a tooth root for the restoration.  It provides stability for the fixed or removable replacement tooth. That means that the dentures or bridges that are affixed to the implant won’t slide around in your mouth.

There are different types of implants available, and only a thorough examination with your Northampton dentist, will reveal the health of the surrounding tissues, teeth and gums and evaluate your bone density. This will tell your dentist if there is enough bone left to place the implant and where it should be placed.

Implants fuse directly to your jawbone, so there is no need to worry about the replacement teeth shifting in your mouth, leaving you embarrassed when you’re speaking or eating. The dentures or bridges will also feel more comfortable in your mouth. Standard bridges and dentures aren’t possible for everyone because some people might have sore spots or poor ridges in their mouth. Bridges need healthy surrounding teeth to attach to, which may not be the case for some patients. With implants, no surrounding teeth need to be prepared.

On the other hand, there are removable partial and full dentures that patients can consider.

With removable partial dentures, the remaining teeth act to stabilize the denture, typically with metal clasps. Precision partial dentures that are claspless are also available.

Removable full dentures are constructed to replace the missing teeth on one or both of the arches of the mouth. The oral cavity tissue will offer support.

Non-removable restorations, such as those with implants, offer patients the security of feeling as if they have a permanent replacement. However, they can be harder to clean, and for patients who already have experienced dental disease, they can be prone to recurrences. Patients who choose this option must be dedicated to maintaining their oral hygiene.

Removable restorations are easier to clean and service, but they are not as stable and can require longer periods to adjust to. They typically cost less, as well.

Removable partial dentures can be constructed much more quickly and are less expensive than their implant counterparts. However, they are more likely to damage the surrounding teeth that are used for support.

Full removable dentures are the least stable option and can cause further bone loss.

When it’s time to consider tooth restoration, schedule a consultation with your dentist or prosthodontist to determine the best solution for you.

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