Dental implants and partial dentures can both be used to replace one or a few missing teeth. Both have their own pros and cons that make the decision between the two a personal one that you should discuss with your cosmetic dentistry specialist. There are a few reasons you might want an implant over partial dentures or dentures over implants.

Pro: Stability While Chewing

Stability while chewing is one of the reasons that dental implants have become so popular in recent years. The jawbone-implanted metal root holds the artificial crown firmly in place so that chewing and speaking feels as close as possible to how they felt with natural teeth.

Partial dentures, on the other hand, involve artificial crowns sitting on top of an either flexible or rigid plate. The plate has hooks on each end that snap around natural teeth for security. While the hooks do hold the plate fairly stable, the plate can still slide around slightly while chewing. This can both feel a bit weird and cause abrasions on your gum tissue under the plate.

Pro: Permanent Rather Than Removable

Dental implants are more stable than dentures because the implants are designed to be permanent or fixed rather than removable. Note that "permanent" is a relative term, as implants do have a lifespan and will need to be replaced at some point down the line due to regular wear and tear.

The permanence of the implants means you can treat the implants the same way you would the rest of your teeth. This means you don't need to adopt a new oral hygiene routine tailored around the implants.

Partial plates are removable, which can be a plus if you feel more comfortable without teeth in those areas when you sleep. But the removability also means that you need to remove and clean the plate well and also clean under the plate. Harmful bacteria can accumulate around and under the plate and cause gum disease or damage to neighboring natural teeth.

Con: Lengthy Installation Process with Possible Failure

When you decide to get partial dentures, you visit a denturist to have molds made of your gums. The dentures are then crafted in a lab and presented to you in another office visit. You might need one or two more office visits to adjust the fit, but you are otherwise done with the teeth replacement process.

Dental implants require a far longer treatment period. The metal root is placed in the bone, then left to heal until the bone fuses around the root. Then a post is placed on the root and the gum tissue is left to heal. Finally, the crown can be placed on the post and the process is complete.

The long process doesn't always go smoothly. First, if you have weak jawbone, you may have to undergo a bone graft with its own healing time before you can receive the root. There's also a small chance that the bone can still be too week and fail to fuse around the root properly, which can result in starting the process all over again.

For further help to decide which type of tooth-replacement option is best for you, contact a representative from an establishment like Dental Services Of Rochester.