Dentures are removable, natural-looking replacements for teeth that can be made as either partial or full sets.
Full dentures are given to patients after removal of all of their natural teeth. It can be a lengthy process that can take up to 12 weeks to complete, especially if the gums need adequate time to heal after extractions. Some patients may be given temporary dentures during this time, but they’re likely to become loose due to shifts in the gums and jawbone that come with tooth loss. When the permanent dentures are ready, they may need to be adjusted a few times to find the right fit.
Especially with a full set of dentures, it may take a little practice to return to normal patterns of chewing or speaking. They also require proper oral care, just like natural teeth. Be sure to use a gentle cleanser to brush your dentures, always keep them moist when you’re not using them, and be sure to keep your tongue and gums clean, too.
Immediate Dentures With Extractions
It is possible to place immediate dentures into the mouth immediately after any remaining natural teeth are extracted and while the full permanent dentures are being made. It’s not usually considered a permanent solution, but can be used when a patient doesn’t want to go weeks or months without teeth. Immediate dentures can also act as a type of bandage while the tooth sockets are healing from extractions.
Ideally, however, immediate dentures are step one of a two-step procedure and should be considered temporary until a second, permanent and refined set of dentures is fabricated.
A partial denture, which is also sometimes referred to as a removable bridge, is attached to your natural teeth using a metal frame and used to fill in gaps formed by missing permanent teeth. Partial dentures can include replacement false teeth that are attached to a gum-colored base and are used when enough natural teeth remain to hold it in place. Their benefits include not only cosmetic fixes to missing teeth, but also the prevention of surrounding teeth from drifting into gaps.
To create a partial denture, your dentist will do a thorough exam, take X-rays of your teeth, and then make a series of measurements and impressions to study not only the missing areas, but the interaction between your jaw bones. A lab will then create wax or plastic molds in the exact shape needed for the denture.
Once you’ve selected the right mold for your mouth, it will be created to match the shape, size and color of your surrounding natural teeth. When it’s ready, you’ll come back in for placement and fine-tuning adjustments if necessary.
Acrylic Partial Dentures
Acrylic partial dentures are an affordable option for some patients that are often available same-day. With this type of partial denture, the replacement teeth are set into an acrylic base and attached to the surrounding natural teeth with small clasps. An acrylic partial denture may be ideal for a patient who has only a few natural teeth remaining, but it may also feel more bulky inside the mouth.
Our trained dental staff can help you determine which type of dentures are right for you.