Many people think that dentures have been left behind in the cosmetic dental revolution; not just denture wearers, but unfortunately a lot of dentists feel this way, too. This simply is not true!
You and many others may think that because you wear dentures, you must sacrifice the look of your dentures for the feel of your dentures. Or more simply, because you wear dentures, you are destined to a life of dentures that present artificial and unattractive looking smiles.
Modern dentures bridge the demands for function, strength, and aesthetics without compromising your comfort. We work with you to design custom dentures that can help restore your natural, beautiful smile.
One of the most common complaints we hear from denture wearers is about the "false teeth" look. This artificial look causes them to be self-conscious about their dentures and consequently, smile less. This complaint is usually accompanied by shortcomings in the ability to chew and the overall discomfort they experience. Studies have shown dentures that don’t look good usually don’t feel good either. Interesting enough, we generally find the above research results to be accurate. "A denture that looks better often feels better."
When a person has lost some but not all of their teeth, a partial denture may be the desired treatment choice. Partial dentures can replace missing teeth in an attractive and healthy way but is removable by the patient
Partial dentures are created from an impression of your teeth and gums which ensures a synonymous fit with the rest of your mouth. These appliances are designed to fill in the empty spaces and to ensure a healthy and functional set of teeth. Retained by small clasps that engage the teeth, the partial denture will secure itself in your mouth. In the right situation, your partial denture will be both comfortable to wear and will provide you with the function you need for optimal health.
Partial dentures can also help maintain the spacing of your natural teeth. When teeth are lost or removed, the remaining teeth will often shift or tilt into the space. This can affect the way you bite and negatively impact your oral health. It can lead to numerous problems, such temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems that could cause headaches, earaches, clicking or popping sounds, or even difficulty moving your jaw. Partial dentures aim to prevent these problems by working to keep your remaining teeth in their natural position.
There are three types of partial dentures we offer:
Conventional full dentures replace missing teeth and their adjacent tissues with a removable dental appliance made of acrylic resin. Conventional full dentures allow a recovery time (usually eight to twelve weeks) after all of the teeth are extracted before the impressions are taken and prior to insertion of the dentures in the mouth. This allows the gum and bone tissue to heal. During this time, the patient will go without teeth.
Now there’s no need to go without teeth for any period of time after having teeth extracted thanks to immediate dentures! It’s certainly more aesthetically-pleasing and probably healthier to have teeth placed immediately after the extraction of your natural teeth! Immediate dentures are those which are placed immediately after extraction of one or more teeth. Because the gum and bony tissues that surround teeth begin to change by shrinking and re-contouring immediately after the removal of teeth, immediate dentures require considerably more treatment time and care than the replacement denture someone receives after having had their teeth out for several years.
Depending on the number and location of teeth being removed, an immediate “treatment” denture is placed and allowed to act as a “functional bandage” that protects the area, effectively preserving the jaw relationship as well as normal speech and chewing function during the healing period. During this period, a series of plastic liner materials is added to the denture to help take up the space left as shrinkage and healing occur. These liner materials preserve the health of the tissue and keep the denture tight and properly adapted to the jaws. Approximately 90% of shrinkage occurs within 7-12 months after removal of the teeth.
At about six months, treatment dentures are replaced entirely with a new, “final” denture that accurately reflects the shape and new contours of the jaw tissues. This approach allows healing to occur with a treatment denture that is modified as your tissue heals and re-contours. It also allows the opportunity for you to see a “try-in” (a preview) of your final denture and to make any personalized changes.
For more information on implant-retained dentures, please visit our section on implant dentistry.