If you’ve ever lost a tooth, you know that there is a lot to think about when it comes to getting it replaced. What is the best option for replacement?…


Dentures vs. Implants

If you’ve ever lost a tooth, you know that there is a lot to think about when it comes to getting it replaced. What is the best option for replacement? How much will it cost? Are there health risks involved? To help answer some of these questions, we have compared two options for replacing missing teeth: dentures and implants.  

1. Dentures

Dentures are removable appliances that can be fitted to your mouth to replace missing teeth. These appliances are also used to replace some gum tissue that may have deteriorated. Of the dentures available, you can get a full set which replaces all teeth in either the upper or lower jaw (or both), as well as partial dentures, which are mainly used to fill in the gaps of a few missing teeth. Partial dentures can be braced by clasps around existing teeth or a precision attachment.

What Are the Benefits of Dentures?

  • Adjustable. As time goes on, you may need to change the denture to better fit your mouth. The appliances can be easily modified to do so.
  • Affordable. Dentures have many benefits, one of the most prominent being that they tend to be affordable for dental work.  
  • Natural Looking. For the most part, dentures will look natural in your mouth. The applications come in a variety of shapes, sizes and coloring to match the current state of your mouth.
  • No Surgery Required. For some people, surgery is a higher risk procedure or simply intimidating. Dentures do not require any type of surgery.

  • Support Oral Structure. Oftentimes, your appearance may change slightly after losing teeth. Having dentures replace teeth will help restore some structure to your mouth.

What Are the Drawbacks of Dentures?

  • Can Weaken Other Teeth. Occasionally, food can get trapped in the dentures, posing a risk for cavities or decay on any remaining teeth. They might also cause gum irritation (or disease, if not taken care of). Partial dentures may also weaken natural teeth because of the clasps needed to hold the denture in place.Dentures in Water
  • Fragile. Some dentures can be fairly breakable if dropped and should be handled carefully.

  • Higher Maintenance. Dentures need to be cleaned regularly in order to prevent further oral damage and maintain the quality of the materials. They should not be worn overnight.

  • Not Always Secure Fixed. Dentures aren’t always firmly in place, and can slip as time goes on due to the wearing of the appliance or jawbone changes. It may also be difficult for a person to speak or chew if the dentures are having trouble staying in.
  • Restrict Types of Food. Foods that are sticky or especially crunchy (like nuts or almonds) would need to be eaten in moderation. Other foods that can be hard to eat, like corn on the cob or steak, should probably be avoided for eating ease with dentures.
  • Needs Replacing. About every 3-6 years, you can expect to need to replace your dentures. If you have chosen an appliance that has a metal framework, it should last slightly longer than other models.

Maintaining Oral Health w/ Dentures

You should clean your dentures everyday just like you would with your normal teeth. Remove the application, rinse it and use a soft bristle toothbrush (with non-abrasive cleaner) to carefully clean the surfaces. This will help prevent scratches. When you take your dentures out, keep them covered in water to maintain their shape. (Note: You can use a different denture cleaning option, like Polident®, but you should avoid using chemicals such as bleach.)

It’s also important to efficiently cleanse your mouth after wearing dentures all day. Brush your natural teeth, your tongue and gums (gently). Use mouthwash for a finishing touch!

How Much do Dentures Cost?

The cost of dentures will vary slightly depending on where you live and the quality of dentures you choose. Below are estimated prices of what you may pay for dentures.

Chart 1

Dentures are a generally more affordable option for tooth loss, but the cost can be lowered even more with a discount dental plan. Take a look here to see how much you can save with a plan.

2. Implants

Dental implants are artificial posts (usually made of titanium) that act as a tooth root. The implants are inserted into your jawbone to anchor a replacement tooth or bridge. This method is useful to replace a single tooth or multiple teeth.

What Are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

  • Long Lasting. Dental implants are meant to be a long-term solution to missing teeth. On average, dental implants last for around 15 years – sometimes even for life! The implants actually help to preserve the bone of Implant your jaw and prevent the gum tissue from shrinking.
  • Low Maintenance. After an implant, you can take care of it just like a normal tooth. Be sure to brush and floss daily!
  • Natural Function. Implants are one of the most natural looking options for replacing a tooth. They also function just as well as natural teeth.
  • Secure Bondage. Because the implants integrate with the jawbone itself, it will not pose any sort of risk of slipping or falling out suddenly.

What Are the Drawbacks of Dental Implants?

  • Can Be Expensive. Implants are a costly option for replacing a tooth. For many, it can be difficult to afford the cost of the implants and crowns or bridges.
  • Requires Surgery. Some people want to avoid surgery because of health risks or dental fears. The process of dental implants does require surgery.

Maintaining Oral Health with Dental Implants

As mentioned above, dental implants are simple to take care of because they don’t require extra maintenance. You can treat them like normal teeth – brushing and flossing daily. If you have a concern or question, bring it up with your dentist.

How Much do Dental Implants Cost?

Like most dental procedures, the cost of dental implant varies widely based on your location, dental health and the type of implant you need/want to get. Besides the actual implant surgery itself, additional costs may come from the diagnostic tests (i.e. bone graft) needed to perform the procedure.

Chart 2

1Dental’s discount dental plans do offer a discounted rate on dental implants. You can take a look at the fee schedule to see how much you can save.

3. In Comparison

Both dentures and implants have their own advantages and disadvantages. So, which one is best for you? Take a look at the quick comparison lists below.

Chart 3
Are you more inclined to wear dentures or get implants? Let us know in the comments below!
We hope this article has given you an idea of what is involved in getting either dentures or implants, as well as an accurate estimate of how much each procedure will cost. As you decide, we’d love to hear your thoughts!

Need to replace fewer teeth? You might also consider dental bridges.


Katie is 1Dental’s copywriter and social media marketer. She aims to promote dental health through new blog posts heavily researched and sourced by topic and social media updates and outreach. Katie has completed her bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies. You’ll find her posting regularly on 1Dental’s social pages: Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Pinterest.

  1. I would like to thank you for mentioning that dental implants are a great way to restore natural functions to a person who’s missing teeth. After getting into a motorcycle accident, my brother has been looking for ways to restore his teeth back to the way they were so he can eat properly again. He follows a very specific diet because he has to keep up a weight-loss routine, so in order to do this, I’ll look for any cosmetic dentists that can help him get what he needs.

    • Hi Melissa,

      Dental insurance plans are designed to cover routine maintenance, emergencies and basic care. Most companies exclude dental implants as a covered benefit, although they will pay for the lowest cost alternative treatment (partials or dentures) and some tooth extractions, depending on the insurance you get.

      That is one of the many benefits of our discount dental plans (an alternative to insurance). You can receive 20% off the cost of implants, which is more than you can usually find anywhere else. If you visit our fee schedule at 1dental.com/fee-schedule, type in your zip code at the top of the page and then hit Ctrl F on your keyboard and type in “implants,” you will be able to quickly see what implants you can get a discount on.

      One way we have seen members really utilize this plan, especially with areas where they need a lot of dental work done is by using dental insurance AND a discount dental plan. While you can’t use both of these at the same visit, you could use dental insurance to cover the extractions (although our discount plan also provides a significant discount on these) and then at your next visit, use the discount plan to get 20% off your implants. Does that make sense?

  2. If my family joins Carrington 500, and I have started the implant process for two teeth, will the plan reimburse me for any costs incurred after the date of joining?

    • Unfortunately no, we cannot reimburse for previous work already done. However, you can still start saving now with the plan.

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