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Do Poor People Have to Have Ugly Teeth?

I’m losing all my teeth. I know it’s my own fault and I don’t need a lecture. I’m already facing the consequences to my actions. I just need to know if I’m destined to be ugly for the rest of my life. My dentist wants me to get dental implants. He says they look and feel just like normal teeth. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford those even if I had a house to mortgage. I’m going to have to get dentures. He said they won’t be nearly as natural. Does that mean I’m destined for ugly teeth because I’m poor?

Miranda K.


As far as appearances go, you can get a gorgeous smile whether you end up with dentures or dental implants. It’s not as much which material as which dentist. Dentistry requires a lot of technical skill, yes. But, it also requires an artistic eye. If your dentist is as skilled with his artistry as he is with his understanding of dentistry then you should get beautiful results either way. He’ll need to be at the top of his cosmetic dentistry game.

Now I know that isn’t as easy for patients to tell. What do you look for? Is there a special degree program? Well, here’s what makes it so tricky. There isn’t. A general dentist and a cosmetic dentist are the exact same thing. There isn’t a cosmetic dentistry specialty. It’s just a matter of who’s taken the time to get the additional training. That makes it quite challenging for the patients to know who will give them a beautiful smile and whose will just be mediocre.

Fortunately, there are a couple of ways for you to get an edge up on knowing if your dentist can give you beautiful results. One is to look him up on mynewsmile.com. If they’ve listed him in their “find a cosmetic dentist” page for your area, then you’re in good hands. Unlike other sites, dentists can not pay to get on the site. They only list dentists who have BOTH the technical qualifications and the artistry. The second thing you can do is look at their smile gallery. Make sure the before and after pictures of cases they’ve done are beautiful.

I know your dentist mentioned the dentures won’t be as natural as the dental implants, but it doesn’t sound like he explained in what ways that is the case. There are some serious “side effects” to dentures that you need to be aware of. I know you cannot afford implants right now, but there are ways to prepare for them and save up. You may want to look toward them as a long term goal.

When your teeth are removed, your body begins reabsorbing the minerals in your jawbone. Eventually, your jaw becomes shrunken. Not only does that age you, but it makes it almost impossible to wear your dentures any longer. It won’t happen overnight, but it will happen. In the immediate, you will find it reduces your chewing capacity by 50%. Many patients adjust to that, but some absolutely hate it. All of these issues are solved by getting dental implants. I just want to make sure you knew what you’re getting into.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. David Newkirk.