Missing teeth can greatly impact a person’s overall quality of life—from the ability to eat comfortably to self-confidence and self-esteem. Thankfully, dentures can help address these problems as a result of the advancement of dental technology.
Dentures are prosthetic devices designed to replace missing teeth. They help restore not only the functionality of your teeth, allowing you to eat and speak comfortably but also help revive the aesthetics of a full, vibrant smile.
What Are Dentures?
Dentures or false teeth are prosthetic devices designed to replace missing teeth. They are often removable for easier cleaning.
But what are permanent dentures? These are dentures that are securely fixed into place, offering a firmer, more natural fit.
What Do Dentures Look Like?
Modern dentures are generally made from Acrylic, a rigid resin material. This allows the denture to have a naturally pink appearance for the base, mimicking the color of gums, and the teeth part can be colored to match natural teeth.
However, it’s essential to note that the appearance of dentures can vary significantly depending on the quality of the dentures and the skill of the dental professional creating them. High-quality dentures should be lifelike and indistinguishable from natural teeth.
How Do Dentures Work?
The way dentures work is fairly simple – they replace missing teeth to restore function and appearance. Typically held in place by the mouth’s natural suction or with a denture adhesive, dentures help with essential tasks like eating and speaking.
Many may wonder, “How are dentures made?” As for how they are made, it involves a detailed process. Firstly, a dental professional takes an impression of the mouth. Then, a model is created based on this impression and is used to make custom-fit dentures. These prosthetics are usually fabricated from materials like acrylic resin or metal, with the fake teeth often made of porcelain.
What Are the Different Types of Dentures?
The type of denture a person needs can vastly differ based on their specific dental condition and personal needs. The variety of dentures available can accommodate anyone, from those who have lost all their natural teeth to those who only need a few replacement teeth.
Here are the different types of dentures available on the market:
- Complete Dentures: As the name indicates, complete dentures are for individuals lacking all their natural teeth. Users can opt for conventional dentures, made and placed after all remaining teeth have been removed and tissues healed. Alternatively, immediate dentures are an option, placed as soon as the teeth extraction is performed.
- Partial Dentures: If you still have some natural teeth, partial dentures are a fitting choice. These denture types are attached to a metal framework connected to your natural teeth, filling the space created by missing teeth.
- Implant-Supported Dentures: These dentures are supported by dental implants, which provide a secure and comfortable fit. Implant-supported dentures are mostly used by people with sufficient bone in the jaw to support the implants.
- Overdentures: This removable type of denture fits over a few remaining natural teeth or dental implants. The existing teeth or implants provide stability to the overdenture.
- Upper Dentures: Upper dentures, often made from denture materials such as acrylic bases mimicking gum tissue and artificial teeth, replace missing teeth in the upper jaw.
How Much Do Dentures Cost?
It’s a complex question, as many factors can contribute to the final bill. One of these factors is the complexity of the patient’s case, which means the price could increase or decrease depending on the individual’s oral health. The type of denture material chosen, such as acrylic or metal, can also significantly affect the cost.
What’s more, the type of denture required, whether partial or full, and the region where you reside can influence the price. Don’t forget to factor in other costs like regular dental check-ups, future dental care, and replacement teeth, as these can all add to the total bill.
What Are Dentures Made of?
Here’s a more in-depth look at denture materials:
- Complete Dentures: These involve an acrylic base supporting a full set of porcelain or acrylic teeth. They replace all of your natural teeth and can be either conventional dentures (placed after the healing period of tooth removal) or immediate dentures (placed right after tooth removal).
- Partial Dentures: Equivalent to dental bridges, partial dentures often have a metal framework to anchor them using remaining natural teeth. They’re used when some healthy natural teeth remain in the mouth.
- Implant-Supported Dentures: These are more stable than traditional ones as they are supported by dental implants inserted into the jawbone. The denture base of such dentures can be crafted from resin, metal, or both. The replacement teeth attached to the base can be made of acrylic or porcelain.
How Should I Properly Care for My Dentures?
Taking care of your dentures, whether complete dentures, partial dentures, conventional dentures, implant-supported dentures, removable dentures, or any other type of denture, is important for their longevity and overall oral health. Unlike natural teeth, dentures can trap food debris and bacteria, risking gum disease, tooth decay, and other complications.
Here are some guidelines for the proper care of your dentures:
- Denture Cleaning: Clean your dentures daily with a specified denture cleaner or denture cleanser, which can help remove food particles and bacteria. However, be mindful not to use hot water, which can cause the dentures’ acrylic base or metal framework to warp.
- Gentle Handling: Remember, dentures are fragile. Whether traditional or permanent dentures, handle them over a folded towel or basin filled with water to prevent any accidental drops that might damage them.
- Overnight Care: Just like your gums, your dentures need rest. They must stay moist to maintain their shape, whichever type of dentures they may be. Remove them at night and soak them in a special denture-soaking solution.
- Routine Dental Check-Ups: Aside from your home dental care routine, scheduling regular dental check-ups is essential. This will not only track the condition of your dentures but also detect signs of bone loss, problematic denture adhesives, and ill-fitting dentures that may cause discomfort, sores, infections, or difficulties in eating and speaking.
- Choose Soft Foods: Especially during the healing period after getting new dentures, soft foods are easier to chew and will put less strain on your dentures and facial muscles.
- Moisturize Your Gums: When you remove your dentures, be they complete dentures, removable dentures, or partial dentures, moisturize them by gently massaging them with a clean, damp cloth to keep them hydrated.
- Avoid Harsh Cleaning Products: It’s crucial not to clean your dentures with bleach-based denture cleansers or scouring powders. These products can be abrasive, leading to scratches and making your dentures more susceptible to staining.
- Mouth Exercises: It’s common to experience some discomfort during the initial adjustment period of wearing dentures. Mouth exercises can help your face and cheek muscles adapt to holding your dentures in place.
What Are the Benefits of Dentures?
Dentures, or what most people would call false teeth, is a type of denture, which could be a complete denture or a partial denture, that not only restores a full smile but also brings several health benefits.
These benefits include:
- Improvement of Self-Confidence: With their realistic look and feel, dentures restore a full smile that closely resembles your natural teeth. Whether your choice is traditional dentures or permanent dentures, they prevent your facial muscles from sagging, providing a youthful and vibrant appearance.
- Enhanced Speech and Eating Abilities: Missing teeth can impact your speech, causing a lisp or other speech impairments. Dentures fill in these gaps with artificial teeth, subsequently improving your pronunciation. Moreover, dentures allow you to enjoy a varied diet, transitioning from soft foods to a more comprehensive range of items.
- Reduction of Oral Health Risks: Dentures are a protective layer for your remaining natural teeth, lowering the risk of gum disease and tooth decay. Furthermore, conventional or removable dentures are essential in minimizing bone loss, a common consequence of tooth loss.
- Customization and Comfort: Dentures today are made from various denture materials like acrylic base or metal framework, ensuring comfort and a good fit. Denture adhesives can further secure dentures, preventing slippage during conversations or meals.
- A Suitable Solution for Diverse Needs: The types of dentures available today are extensive. Whether you need a complete denture to replace all of your teeth or a partial denture to replace a few missing teeth, the solution is available. Dental implants can support dentures for those who require a more permanent and stable solution.
- Preserving the Remaining Teeth: A partial denture fills in the gaps made by missing teeth and helps preserve the remaining natural teeth. By offering support and reducing strain, partial dentures can assist in extending the lifespan of your remaining natural teeth.
Moving Towards a Complete, Confident Smile
Dentures provide functional benefits and restore the joy of smiling without hesitation. With varied types available, proper care required, and a range of costs, it is essential to consult a dental professional to guide you toward the best option for your specific needs.
You’ve made it to the end of our comprehensive guide. If you have any more questions about dentures or if you’re considering this solution for missing teeth, schedule an appointment with us today. We’re here to assure you that dentures can significantly elevate your quality of life, bringing back your confident smile. Contact us today for more information.