A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and adjoining tissues.
Complete dentures replace all of the teeth. They are usually done after the healing period of the last extracted tooth. They are also done to replace an old or broken denture. Dentures usually need to be replaced every 5-7 years because of the wear and tear. If there is too much wear and the mouth is over closed, it leads to TMJ problems, inflammation of the corners of the lips (angular chelitis) and improper chewing and speaking abilities.
A partial denture fills in the spaces created by missing teeth and prevents other teeth from shifting positions. A partial denture can be made of purely plastic, flexible plastic or a combination of metal and plastic. The type will be picked based on the evaluation of the remaining teeth, gums and bite and tolerance level.
An immediate denture is placed as soon as the teeth are removed. The dentures are made before the extractions so they are ready on the day of extractions. These need to be relined after a few months of placement because the gums do shrink after extractions and need to be refitted. The refitting only takes a few hours. The advantage is that you don’t have to stay without teeth for even a single day.
Candidates for complete dentures have lost most or all of their teeth. A partial denture is suitable for those who have some natural teeth remaining. A denture improves
- chewing ability and speech
- provides support for facial muscles (face lift)
- denture can greatly enhance a patient’s facial appearance and smile.
The process includes the initial diagnosis; the making of an impression and wax bite to determine the dimensions and proper jaw position; a “try-in” to assure proper color, shape, and fit; placement of the final denture; and any minor adjustments. New denture wearers need time to get accustomed to their new “teeth”, because even the best-fitting dentures will feel awkward at first. Your normal speaking ability usually resumes shortly after final denture placement. In addition, in order to become accustomed to chewing with the new denture, it is often recommended that you start with soft, easy-to-chew foods. To ensure proper fit, see Dr. Bogg on a regular basis.
Dentures are no longer the only way to restore a mouth that has little or no teeth. Dental implants and bridges are alternatives to restore missing teeth.