Dentures are divided into two main categories: complete dentures and partial dentures. If you are missing many teeth, we may recommend dentures or partials.
Complete dentures are designed to replace the teeth in an entire arch when all the teeth are missing. Partial dentures are used when there are still teeth present in the arch.
Complete dentures consist of an acrylic base to imitate gum tissue, and the teeth that can be made of acrylic or porcelain. The denture base is made to closely fit the contours of the arch to ensure the denture is stable during normal oral functions such as eating, speaking, or swallowing.
Complete denture may be either conventional or immediate. A conventional type is made after the teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has healed, usually taking 4 to 6 weeks. During this time, the patient will go without teeth. Immediate dentures are made in advance and immediately placed after the teeth are removed, thus preventing the patient from having to be without teeth during the healing process. Once the tissues shrink and heal, adjustments will have to be made.
Partial dentures can be made with a metal framework that has acrylic base and teeth attached in the areas where the teeth are missing. The metal framework also has clasps or arms that extend out and fit around some of the existing teeth. The combination of the acrylic base and the arms that wrap around some of the teeth keep the partial denture stable during normal oral functions.
Dentures are very durable appliances and will last many years, but may have to be remade, repaired, or readjusted due to normal wear.
The process of getting dentures requires several appointments, usually over several weeks. Highly accurate impressions (moulds) and measurements are taken and used to create your custom denture. Several “try-in” appointments may be necessary to ensure proper shape, color, and fit. At the final appointment, your dentist will precisely adjust and place the completed denture, ensuring a natural and comfortable fit.
It is normal to experience increased saliva flow, some soreness, and possible speech and chewing difficulty, however this will subside as your muscles and tissues get used to the new dentures.
You will be given care instructions for your new dentures. Proper cleaning of your new dental appliance, good oral hygiene, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new dentures.