For women going through menopause, osteoporosis might be the last thing on your mind. But as you age past 50, bone density should be of greater concern to you. Osteoporosis is a condition that causes bones to become weak and brittle — so brittle that a fall or even mild stresses like bending over or coughing can cause a fracture — and it often hits hardest after menopause. Osteoporosis has been linked to bone loss in the jaw which weakens its density and leads to tooth loss. Every day, women everywhere must choose between dentures and dental implants to replace their teeth, and we know the choice is hard. But a recent study suggests the answer is simpler than we thought: Dental implants might just improve your quality of life.
Researchers from Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine found that women with implants experienced increased comfort, speech, chewing function, and fit compared to other restorations. “Our research suggests that there are likely some comfort-related factors, some functionality, and some aesthetic reasons why an implant restoration bypasses the quality of the others,” says co-author Leena Palomo, DDS, MSD, an associate professor and director of the periodontics program at Case Western Reserve. “Intuitively it would make sense that an implant restoration is better in comfort and function compared to a fixed or removable restoration, but the collective effect of these factors is seen in distant psychosocial measures.”
The study surveyed 237 osteoporotic women with one or more adjacent teeth missing and asked them to rate their occupational, health, emotional, and sexual quality of life. The results showed that women with dental implants scored higher overall than those with fixed partial dentures, removable partial dentures, or no restorations.
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If you’re dealing with osteoporosis and looking to enjoy life a little more, give us a call at (912) 629-9000! We’d be happy to schedule a consultation to discuss the best restoration for you.