I’m struggling with what to do about my teeth. They’ve been a pretty consistent problem my whole life. I had a bridge which was anchored to my two canine teeth. Those recently became loose and, as a result, I had to have them extracted as well. I go to Comfort Dental. They suggested a partial denture. I went with it but am absolutely miserable. I hate this partial so much. It’s the most uncomfortable thing I’ve ever had. I told them I needed to do something different. They’re suggesting replacing the upper teeth with mini dental implants, to save money and put a flexible partial on two missing bottom teeth. They feel it will last ten years. Because I was so unhappy with my last partial that I decided to get a second opinion. The dentist I saw had such a radically different plan, I’m left confused. The second opinion dentist wants to do a bridge with full implants on the missing canine teeth and a third “stabilizing’ implant in the middle. For the bottom teeth, they think a bridge will be better because there is an adjacent tooth which needs a crown. It’s more expensive than the Comfort Dental plan, but I wanted a second, second opinion in order to figure this out. I’ve sort of lost confidence in Comfort Dental which is the only reason I’m considering the more expensive plan. What do you think?
I’m going to recommend the more expensive option, but because it will actually save you money as well as a lot of grief. Mini implants, while they cost less, are not designed to support a dental crown. They can be used to help stabilize a denture, but they will not hold up the way Comfort Dental is suggesting. Ten years is a wild exaggeration of how long these will last, in my opinion.
For argument’s sake, though, let’s say they last ten years. When they fail, you can’t just replace them. The failure will include significant bone loss. In order to replace them, you’ll need to have bone grafting done and THEN replace them. So, now you’ve done the procedure twice plus and additional surgery. Tell me how that saves you money? What about the time you lose having to re-do these every few years as well.
The Better Plan
Let’s start with the bottom teeth. If you have another tooth needing a crown already, the bridge makes much more sense than what Comfort Dental recommended. That’s an easy peasy decision.
I also like the full dental implants for the canines. This is much more likely retain the teeth. However, even then, there are problems because of the location of the anchor teeth and the way our bites work.
When we bite, the anchor teeth have twisting forces playing against them. This will cause them to eventually become loose. This is why you lost your bridge to begin with and Comfort Dental would have known that would happen. Your second opinion dentist, on the other hand, is being pro-active by recommending a stabilizing dental implant between everything. This eliminates that as an issue and will enable to implant bridge to last your lifetime.
To me, this is a hand’s down decision. Go with the second dentist.
This blog is brought to you by Hoffman Estates Dentist Dr. William Becker.