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If you have lost teeth that need replacing, you will have a couple of different options to choose from. Most popularly, people looking for replacement teeth will typically choose between dental implants or dentures. These are both great options but have some substantial differences to consider when choosing the right option for you.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for lost teeth, which is why it’s important to consider your unique needs, preference and lifestyle when choosing between these two solutions. As an experienced denturist in Winnipeg, we offer both of these options and can help you weigh your options.

We know it can be overwhelming when faced with an important decision that directly impacts your face and smile. We have broken down some of the essential differences between dental implants and dentures to help you choose the right one for you.

Dentures VS Implants

Dentures and dental implants serve similar functions in different ways. While both are solutions to missing teeth, one is more permanent than the other. Dentures replace missing teeth and can be either permanent or removable. Dental implants, on the other hand, are applied surgically to bone structure to act as a more permanent, durable replacement.

While dentures are an appliance, implants bond to your teeth over time and act as a permanent replacement that mimics natural teeth. They are designed to replace the function of teeth. Ultimately, dental implants act more like natural teeth than dentures that act as more of a visual replacement that a functional one.

At Koster Denture Clinic, we specialize in both dentures and dental implants in Manitoba and will work with you to determine the solution that will best suit your needs.

The Options

Choosing between dental implants and dentures is the first part of the decision-making process since there are also different types of implants and dentures.

Types of Implants

There are mainly two different types of implants that you will need to choose between.

  1. Endosteal Implants: These dental implants are surgically attached to your jawbone and require a second surgery to connect a post to the implant and attach the artificial tooth.

  2. Subperiosteal Implants: These dental implants are made of a metal frame that is attached below the gum tissue onto the jawbone so that the frame can bond to the jawbone as the gums heal.

Types of Dentures

There are a wide variety of different denture types to choose from based on your needs. That said, the different main types of dentures available to you will be:

  • Fixed Bridge (AKA Fixed Partial Denture): These dentures are smaller dentures that are held in place by (or fixed between) two teeth on either side. These are not removable since they are placed between by healthy teeth.

  • Partial Denture (AKA Removable Partial Denture): A partial denture is a denture that replaces one or more teeth and is attached to neighbouring healthy teeth. These dentures can be removed.

  • Complete Dentures: As its name suggests, complete dentures replace a full mouth of teeth.

The Process

Since one is surgical and the other is non-surgical, dental implants and dentures both have very different processes. Dental implants require a surgical procedure to replace the root of your teeth with a new replacement root typically made of titanium metal. The Canadian Dental Association describes the implant as “an anchor to hold the replacement tooth in place.”

Dentures, on the other hand, are non-invasive and don’t involve any surgical procedure. When it comes to dentures, you will have to wait for your mouth to heal after your initial tooth removal so that you can make an impression of your mouth. This way, the dentures can be specifically designed to fit your mouth and over your dental arches. This can be done for a full mouth or partial sections of the mouth. This is known as partial dentures.

The Recovery Time

Since dental implants are surgical, they require some recovery time to heal. Dentures, on the other hand, require no recovery time at all.

The Feel

Because dental implants are bonded to your teeth, they feel more natural than dentures that feel less natural and can’t be worn overnight.

The Other Teeth

It is extremely rare to have to remove all of your teeth, which is why dentures and implants are often just applied for specific teeth or sections of the mouth. That said, both solutions have different impacts on your other teeth.

Since dental implants directly replace not only the tooth but its root, the overall bone health is maintained and doesn’t impact any other teeth in your mouth. If you have dentures, on the other hand, you will have to maintain them regularly to ensure they don’t impact your other teeth.

The Eating Experience

Eating is something we do every day and will look different based on the option you choose. With dentures, you are unable to eat specific food. Specifically, when eating with new dentures, you’ll need to eat softer foods and will have to avoid harder, crunchier foods to avoid irritating or inflaming your gums and teeth. With implants, since they are bonded to your teeth, you will be able to eat any food of your choice.

The Maintenance

Both dental implants dentures require maintenance, just as your real teeth do. Dentures, for one, need to be removed and cleaned thoroughly on a regular basis. Consistently cleaning your dentures is essential to avoid bacteria buildup and other issues. Dental implants, on the other hand, require the same maintenance as real teeth, which is mainly brushing and flossing.

The Costs

Dentures and dental implants also differ in cost, as implants are often a more expensive oral replacement solution than dentures. That said, while the upfront costs of dentures are less than implants, it\’s important to understand the long-term costs that come with these treatments. Dentures may be cheaper

While cost is a major reason people make their decision for oral replacement options, it’s important to know that while implants may be an expensive initial solution, dentures will eventually require replacements and costly upkeep to maintain their usefulness over time.

The Long Term Impacts

When it comes to dental work, it’s always important to compare the short-term impacts to the long-term impacts. For example, dentures are a great short-term solution as they are less expensive and don’t require surgery.

That said, dentures need to be replaced every 3 to 6 years, whereas properly maintained dental implants can last for decades without the need for other appliances or procedures.