Can You Switch to Dental Implants After Getting Dentures?


Reviewed by: Dr. Martha (Periodontist), Dr. Pierre (Prosthodontist)

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Written By Dr. Andrew

Dr. Andrew is a leading dental implant specialist (Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon) celebrated for his precision and patient-centric approach. He's a trusted name in advanced dentistry with a track record of successful procedures and a commitment to the latest techniques.

Dentures have long been a traditional solution for lost teeth, offering a practical way to maintain functionality and appearance. However, with advancements in dental technology, dental implants have emerged as a superior alternative for many.

This leads to an important question: is it possible to switch from dentures to dental implants? This article explores this possibility, delving into the nuances of both options, the transition process, and the factors one must consider before making such a decision.

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Understanding Dentures

What are Dentures?

Dentures are removable prosthetic devices designed to replace missing teeth. They come in two main types: complete dentures for those who have lost all their teeth, and partial dentures for those missing some teeth.

Pros and Cons

The primary advantage of dentures is their accessibility. They are generally less expensive than implants and don’t require surgery. However, dentures can be less comfortable, may not fit perfectly, and require regular maintenance. Over time, they can lead to bone loss in the jaw since they don’t stimulate bone growth like natural teeth or implants do.

Common Issues

Denture wearers often face issues such as slippage, difficulty in eating certain foods, and discomfort. These problems can impact the quality of life, leading individuals to seek more permanent solutions like dental implants.

Introduction to Dental Implants

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are titanium posts surgically inserted into the jawbone, acting as roots for artificial teeth. They fuse with the bone, providing a stable foundation for replacement teeth.


Implants offer several benefits over dentures. They feel and function like natural teeth, offer better comfort, and don’t slip or cause speech difficulties. Importantly, they stimulate and preserve bone growth, preventing jawbone deterioration.


The main drawbacks include higher cost and the need for surgery. The process is also lengthier and might not be suitable for everyone, especially those with certain health conditions or inadequate bone density.

Read: Can Dental Implants Replace Molar Teeth?

Switching from Dentures to Implants


Switching is certainly feasible. However, it requires a comprehensive dental assessment. Key factors include the current state of oral health, bone density in the jaw, and overall health conditions that might affect surgery and healing.

The Transition Process

Steps and Procedures

The transition involves several steps. Initial assessments include x-rays and possibly CT scans to evaluate bone health. If there’s insufficient bone density, procedures like bone grafting might be necessary. Once the jaw is ready, the implant posts are surgically inserted. After healing, custom-made crowns are fitted onto the implants.

Timeline and Expectations

The entire process can take several months to a year, depending on individual circumstances. Patients should expect a period of healing and adjustment.

Cost and Insurance Considerations

Implants are more expensive than dentures but offer a longer-lasting solution. It’s essential to consider insurance coverage and financing options, as some plans may partially cover implants.

Success Stories and Case Studies

There are numerous success stories of individuals who have made the switch. For instance, John, a 58-year-old former denture wearer, shared how implants restored not just his smile but also his confidence and comfort in everyday life.

FAQs about Switching to Dental Implants

Common Questions

  • Is the procedure painful? Discomfort is typically manageable with medication.
  • How long do implants last? With proper care, they can last a lifetime.
  • Can anyone get implants? Most adults in good health are eligible, but individual assessments are crucial.


Transitioning from dentures to dental implants is a significant decision that can profoundly impact one’s quality of life. While the process involves consideration of various factors like health, cost, and commitment to the procedure, the benefits of dental implants are undeniable. They offer a more permanent, comfortable, and natural-looking solution compared to dentures. For those struggling with the limitations of dentures, consulting with a dental professional to explore the option of implants is a worthwhile step towards a better, more confident smile.

Read: How A Dental Implant Failure Occurs & Its Treatment

In summary, while the journey from dentures to dental implants may seem daunting, the end result can be immensely rewarding, offering a return to normalcy and an enhancement in the quality of life that dentures often cannot match.

For those considering this transition, it is recommended to consult with dental professionals and review additional resources for a comprehensive understanding of the process. Reliable online resources, dental association websites, and patient testimonials can provide valuable insights and information to help in making an informed decision.

FAQs: Switching from Dentures to Dental Implants

  1. Can anyone switch from dentures to dental implants?
    • Not everyone is a suitable candidate for dental implants. Factors such as overall health, jawbone density, and oral health conditions are crucial determinants. Individuals with certain health conditions or inadequate bone density might not be eligible. A thorough dental examination is necessary to assess suitability.
  2. How long does the entire process of switching take?
    • The timeline varies from person to person, depending on individual needs and healing capacity. Generally, the process can take several months to over a year. This includes initial consultations, any preparatory procedures like bone grafting, the implant surgery itself, and the healing period before the final crown placement.
  3. Will I be without teeth during the transition process?
    • No, you will not be without teeth during the transition. Temporary solutions, like a temporary denture or bridge, can be used while the implants are integrating with the jawbone and during the healing process.
  4. Is the switch from dentures to implants painful?
    • The discomfort associated with dental implant surgery is typically manageable with pain medication and is often reported to be less than anticipated. Most patients experience some soreness after the procedure, but this can usually be controlled with over-the-counter pain relievers.
  5. Are dental implants more cost-effective than dentures in the long run?
    • While the initial cost of dental implants is higher than dentures, they can be more cost-effective in the long run due to their durability and lower maintenance requirements. Unlike dentures, which may need to be replaced or adjusted periodically, dental implants can last a lifetime with proper care, potentially saving money on future dental work.

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