Seniors who are missing teeth have a variety of options for dental care, including dental implants and dentures. Here is a guide to considering which of these to choose.
Get Checked for Bone Disease
Before you begin, you might want to get checked for overall bone density and bone health. Dental implants require you to have a strong jawbone, since the material is supposed to fuse directly into the jaw. Your general physician can often do tests to see if you have early signs of bone disease; if so, dentures may be the best option.
Have Your Gum Health Assessed
Likewise, you should visit your dentist office to rule out issues with gum disease and infection. The dental implant procedure does create an open wound in your mouth for some time, so you'll want to make sure that your immune system and your gums can handle the temporary inflammation.
Consider the Cost for Multiple Implants
Another consideration for getting dental implants is whether you have multiple teeth to replace. This can get expensive quickly if you will need several teeth replaced in the future. Dentures do a great job of replacing multiple teeth at once.
Consider the Pros and Cons of Implants vs Dentures
If all of the above considerations have been checked out, it's time to consider the pros and cons of getting implants vs dentures. Implants can be a great option because they are very easy to maintain. For instance, since they fit directly into your jaw, there is less of an adjustment period in learning how to eat and talk again. You will also have a more natural looking smile compared to a full denture replacement. There's less special maintenance involved as well, especially for non removable dental implants.
Dentures have their uses as well. They are a more cost-effective solution, even though you may have to get new dentures if your facial structure changes. Dentures are a good option for people who want to have a removable appliance. Depending on your insurance, it may be easier to get coverage for a full denture treatment as well. This is because if you get all of your teeth replaced by dentures, it can ward off the necessity for future dental visits.
Each of the options has some benefit for seniors, so whenever you're in doubt about which to choose, be sure to discuss your concerns with your dentist office. Contact a clinic like Minnesota Lakes Dental for more info.