Which Dentures Are Perfect For Me?
Dentures can improve the look of your smile, give your bite more functionality and help prevent dental problems that missing teeth can cause. Here’s everything you should know about getting dentures.
What are dentures?
If you are missing several teeth, your dentist may recommend a set of dentures. Not just for older people who have lost their teeth. Dentures are custom-made teeth used to improve the look and function of a patient’s smile after tooth loss or extractions. Dentures used to be removable but today they can be secured into place with the help of attachments like dental implants. Missing teeth can cause other problems in your mouth. Whether you’re missing a whole mouthful of teeth or just a few, your existing teeth can start to move out of position.
There are lots of benefits to getting dentures, including:
- Restoring the look of your smile.
- Improving your speech or ability to eat
- Boosting your self confidence
- Improving your oral health
What are the different types of dentures?
There are two main types of dentures; complete and partial dentures. Complete dentures are a set of prosthetic teeth that replace all the teeth in the lower or upper or lower jaw. Partial dentures only replace the teeth that are missing and may be used as an alternative to bridges or implants.
Complete dentures are made up of two parts; the artificial teeth and the denture base. Artificial teeth function just like regular teeth and can help you chew and bite your food the same way that natural teeth do. They also look completely natural. These artificial teeth sit on the denture base which acts as the foundation for your teeth.
Full upper and full lower dentures are slightly different since each part of the mouth is different. The upper denture features a plate covering the roof of your mouth. This part is called the maxillary arch. The lower section is the mandibular arch and rests on the gum and bone tissue of your lower jaw.
Partial dentures are made up of several artificial teeth and a metal or gum-coloured base with a metal framework that helps keep them in place. Partial dentures can be made of different materials including resin or cobalt-chromium. Metal bases are lighter and more durable than plastic, plastic or polymer dentures are more affordable and can look more natural.
How are dentures usually fitted?
Both partial and complete dentures can be fitted immediately or conventionally.
Immediate dentures are positioned straight away after a tooth extraction. Before your tooth extraction your dentist will take several impressions of your mouth to ensure the right fit and insert them straight after the extraction.
Immediate dentures have a few advantages. They allow you the look of a full set of teeth even while your gums heal from surgery and ensure you still have full functionality of your teeth. There are some downsides though. They come at an extra cost and require continual adjustment through the healing period as your gums and bones heal.
Conventional dentures are fitted once your gums have healed from tooth loss or extraction. They are a permanent replacement for your teeth and only fitted once your gums are healed. This helps increase the possibility of them fitting comfortably over the long term.
After tooth loss, a dentist will take impressions of your jaw and create a model set of dentures for you to try out. Your dentist can make changes for fit and colour before they create your permanent pair of dentures. The only downside to conventional dentures is waiting four to eight weeks for your mouth to heal before you can wear them.
How do dentures stay in place?
Removable dentures stay in place by creating a suctioning effect against the bone ridge that once held your teeth in place. This is why it’s so important that your dentures fit properly.
Your dentist may also recommend implants to hold your dentures in place. The implants act as supporting posts which the dentures are secured to. Some dentists also insert a metal plate along the gum line, magnetically binding the dentures in place. Implant-supported dentures are still removable and can be taken out or placed in the mouth as required.
Another option to keep your dentures in place is with crowns. Crown supported dentures are supported by a dental bridge. This is a good choice for people with partial dentures as you will need natural teeth either side of the extraction to support your dentures.
If you have missing teeth or think you need dentures talk to the team at Gentle Dental today. Our friendly dentists can answer all your questions and ensure the perfect fit.