I am losing my teeth. They are literally crumbling. My dentist has said it would be a bad idea to get dentures. My insurance doesn’t cover anything else. What if that is all I can afford to do?
I’m assuming you’re fairly young because of the comment your dentist made. If so, his concern is valid. Let’s go over the downside to dentures and then we’ll look at your options.
Problems with Dentures
Even the best fitting dentures reduce your chewing capacity by 50%. This is a quality of life issue more than anything else. Another issue is they are removable which makes them mobile in your mouth. The uppers are held in by suction and the lowers just sit on your ridge.
The biggest problem with dentures is the loss of jawbone. Our bodies are remarkably efficient and recognize when our teeth have been removed. When that happens, our brain decides the minerals in your jawbone would be more useful elsewhere and resorbs and redistributes them around your body. After about 10 or more years, you will no longer have enough jawbone left to retain your dentures. This is known in dental circles as facial collapse.
It is always best to save as many natural teeth as you can. This is the most affordable way to save your jawbone. One thing to be aware of is there are removable dentures which make room for your natural teeth.
It’s simple enough to remove one of the false teeth later if you happen to lose another one.
Ideally, however, you’d want to get dental implants. I’m certain that’s what your dentist was suggesting because they will prevent facial collapse. However, not everyone has the budget for that.
Getting Affordable Dental Implants
There are intermediary steps between dentures and full-on dental implants. One suggestion is for you to get snap on dentures. These can be done with as few as two dental implants and will help preserve the bone in the area of implant placement. Bone loss is much more devastating on your lower arch so this would be the best place to get them.
This blog is brought to you by the Decatur, AL Dentists Drs. Drake and Wallace.