Losing your natural teeth due to injury, extreme cases of tooth decay or serious gum disease means that you’ll need a good pair of dentures in order to continue to maintain a good appearance as well as to chew and talk normally. Without teeth, you may experience sagging facial muscles, which result in sunken cheeks and otherwise make you look older than you are. Fortunately, your dentist can provide you with a custom made pair of dentures that will allow you to keep eat and speak in your usual fashion. Modern dentures have come a long way from their counterparts of the past and can be made to look and feel as much like your natural teeth as possible. In fact, some patients even find that dentures improve their overall appearance.
Types of Dentures
There are three basic types of dentures. These include:
Conventional dentures are the kind that the majority of people are most familiar with. They are completely removable and can only be placed in the mouth after all remaining gum tissues have healed completely. This may take a few months. This form of dentures is only used when the patient has no remaining natural teeth.
Immediate dentures are also entirely removable. Unlike conventional dentures, they can be inserted into the mouth immediately after the removal of the teeth. They can also be used as full or partial dentures. Although these are generally more expensive than their conventional counterparts, you won’t have to go through several months of being without teeth. However, it may be necessary for your dentist to realign your immediate dentures after your jaw has completely healed — bones and tissue tends to shrink as they heal. Immediate dentures are usually considered a temporary fix while waiting for conventional dentures.
Partial dentures are probably better known as bridges and are used when several teeth in a row have been removed. They can only work when one or more natural teeth remain in the upper or lower gums. There are two main types of partial dentures. The first is known as the ‘precision bridge,’ and this type is completely removable because it’s held in place with internal attachments. Precision bridges are also referred to by some as ‘overdentures.’
The second type of partial dentures is generally referred to as a ‘fixed bridge’ due to the fact that it’s cemented into place. Precisions are more natural-looking, but fixed bridges are more convenient. Your dental care professional can help you decide which option is best for you.
Oral Care After You Get Dentures
No matter what type of dentures you end up with, it will probably take you several weeks to completely get used to wearing them. For instance, they may feel loose at first until the muscles in your face adjust to holding them in place. You may also experience minor irritation and a temporary increase in saliva flow, but these problems should subside as your mouth gets used to wearing your new dentures. Keep in mind that even if you have a full set of dentures, you’ll nonetheless need to brush your gums, roof of your mouth, and tongue using a brush with soft bristles before you insert your dentures in the morning.
Please feel free to contact our office for more information on dentures or with any other oral care questions you may have.