Dentures are a prosthetic replacement for natural teeth which can be used to replace all or some of a patient’s natural teeth. Every set of dentures is custom designed for each specific patient and the color of the teeth is adjusted to match the natural color of the patients’ teeth.
Earlier, dentures were made using plastic or porcelain. However, most of the dentures used today are manufactured using hard resin. The hard resin can crack or chip easily compared to natural teeth. Dentures wear out faster than natural teeth and thus are required to be changed periodically. The supporting structure of dentures resembles the natural gum line and is manufactured using a flexible polymer which fits conveniently on the natural gum line.
Why use dentures?
Dentures are an affordable alternative to other prosthetic restorations such as bridges, crowns, and dental implants. Apart from enhancing the aesthetics of a patient’s smile, dentures maintain the shape of the face by soundly supporting the structure around lips and cheeks. Additionally, dentures ensure the patient receives proper nutrition by enabling them to chew on their food properly. They can also be used to replace teeth which are severely damaged and can create an assortment of other health complications.
What are the different types of dentures?
Based on the number of teeth being replaced, dentures can be broadly divided into two types:
- Partial Dentures
Partial dentures are often used over other restorative options when the surrounding teeth are not strong enough to anchor support structures such as bridges, implants, and crowns. Partial dentures are attached to the natural gum line using dental adhesives and use the natural teeth as support to keep them in place. They are not permanent restorations and can be removed as and when required.
- Complete Dentures
Full or complete dentures are used to replace all of the patient’s natural teeth. Complete dentures are fitted to the top and bottom gum lines using oral adhesives or suction. Like partial dentures, complete dentures can be removed easily by the patient as and when required.
- Immediate Dentures
Immediate dentures can be both full and partial. They differ in the conventional dentures in terms of the time take to fit each of them in a patient’s mouth. These types of dentures are made before all or some of the teeth in a patient’s mouth are to be removed. This allows dentists to fit these dentures immediately after the teeth have been extracted and the gum line has healed. Unlike immediate dentures, fitting of conventional dentures can take as long as six months from the time of teeth extraction. However, immediate dentures are a temporary solution as the gum line and bone structure in the mouth undergoes changes over time. Permanent or conventional dentures are then used to replace immediate dentures.
An affordable and comfortable alternative for traditional dentures, overdentures are fit over the roots of the teeth or supported by dental implants. Patients with some teeth left find the alternative more comfortable and efficient. Dental implant supported overdentures are increasingly becoming popular among patients owing to the stable structure provided by the implants. In addition to providing comfort, implant-supported dentures produce better bite force than the traditional dentures. Dental implant supported dentures also prevent bone resorption over time and thus maintain the structure of the face.
How is the cleaning and preservation of dentures done?
Like teeth, dentures need to be cleaned daily. Although made up of artificial teeth, bacteria, plaque, and tartar can build on dentures and eventually harm your healthy teeth and gums.
The effective cleaning procedure for dentures requires them to be cleaned using a denture or a soft bristle brush using a denture cleaner or mild soap. Using normal cleaning solutions such as toothpaste or any other solution can damage and wear away the denture material. Additionally, the patient should clean the gums and natural teeth if any using a soft-bristle brush.
Dentists recommend removing dentures while sleeping in order to protect them from any damage and allowing your gums to relax. Dentures should be fully submerged in warm water to prevent them from any damage.
Our team at West Lake View Dental specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of a variety of dental ailments. This includes dental exams, professional dental cleanings, root canal treatments or cosmetic enhancements like teeth whitening, Botox treatment, and teeth contouring. We also utilize the latest technology like digital X-rays to devise the best treatment plan for you. If you are looking for a smile makeover or full mouth reconstruction, visit West Lake View Dental for the best dental experience.