I’ve always have had problems with my teeth, but two pregnancies with hyperemesis gravidarum put me in the hospital. They pretty much destroyed my teeth. It’s been non-stop trying to keep them and it’s consuming my life. I have two toddlers to take care of now. I don’t have time to deal with this. I went to a dentist and asked him to pull all of my teeth and give me dentures. His response shocked me and I left in tears. He said he’d never heard a request so moronic in his entire career and if I’d taken care of my teeth I wouldn’t be in this position. He also said I’d ruin my life with dentures. Is he right? Will it ruin my life?
You’ve been through so much. I’m appalled at how your dentist treated you. It was insensitive and irresponsible. He should know better. You’re a mom of two toddlers who faced hyperemesis gravidarum twice. Not only does that play havoc on your teeth, but you’re likely exhausted just from your everyday life. If there was ever a time to show compassion, now was it.
I know you’re tired of dealing with your teeth. Dentures, however, will make your life even harder. I wish your dentist would have explained that instead of just calling your suggestion moronic. The two biggest reasons you don’t want dentures are quality of life and facial collapse.
Quality of Life with Dentures
The first thing you need to know is that no matter how well fit your dentist makes your dentures they will still reduce your chewing capacity to around 50% of what it normally is. In addition to that, food gets under the denture, which is uncomfortable. It changes your relationship with food. Some people learn to live with it without too much bother. For others, it’s a constant source of distress.
However, the most important reason to avoid dentures is the loss of your jawbone. When your teeth are removed, your body recognizes that you no longer have roots to your teeth there. Without the roots, your body reabsorbs the minerals in your jawbone to use elsewhere in your body where it perceives it is more needed.
After about ten years or so, there isn’t enough jawbone left to even hold your dentures in any longer. I’m sure you’ve seen older people with faces that looked squished. That’s because of facial collapse. It’s also why their dentures fall out.
A Better Plan
First, I would find a new dentist. This one isn’t even nice. Why spend your hard earned money on someone who behaves like a jerk? Ideally, you’ll want to save as many teeth as possible. Have a decent and kind dentist list everything your teeth need from most urgent to least. Then, you can work out a treatment plan which you can live with. Let he or she know that you’re an exhausted mom with toddlers so the timetable is reasonable and gives you breaks between treatments.
Let’s say the worst case scenario happens and your teeth can’t be saved. In that case, I’d suggest implant overdentures. It combines dental implants and dentures in a way that not only saves your jawbone, it also significantly improves your quality of life.
Hopefully, you can find a dentist you can have a great working relationship with. Be sure to check their reviews before scheduling a new patient appointment. No point in wasting your time.
This blog is brought to you by Drs. Drake and Wallace.