People wear dentures to replace lost or missing teeth so they can enjoy a healthy diet and smile with confidence. Dentures are made of either acrylic (plastic) or metal.
A ‘complete’ or ‘full’ denture is one which replaces all the natural teeth in either the upper or lower jaw.
A ‘partial’ denture fills in the spaces left by lost or missing teeth. It may be fastened to your natural teeth with metal clasps or ‘precision attachments’.
Why should I wear dentures?
Full dentures, to replace all your own teeth, fit snugly over your gums. They will help you to eat comfortably and speak clearly.
Partial dentures replace teeth that are missing, and can sometimes be supported by the teeth you have left. If you have gaps between your teeth, then your other teeth may move to take up some of the space, so you could end up with crooked or tilted teeth.
This could affect the way you bite and could damage your other teeth.
How soon can I have a denture after my teeth are taken out?
Usually dentures can be fitted straight after your teeth have been removed. These are called ‘immediate dentures’. You will need to visit us beforehand for them to take measurements and impressions of your mouth.
With immediate dentures you don’t have to be without teeth while your gums are healing. However, bone and gums can shrink over time, especially during the first six months after your teeth have been taken out. If your gums shrink, your immediate dentures may need relining, adjusting or even replacing. We will be able to talk to you about this.
Sometimes we may advise you to wait until your gums are healed before having your dentures, as this can sometimes mean a better fit. Healing may take several months.
Will dentures make me look different?
Replacing lost or missing teeth is very good for your health and appearance. A complete or full denture replaces your natural teeth and gives support to your cheeks and lips.
Without this support, sagging facial muscles can make a person look older and they will find it harder to eat and speak properly. Dentures can be made to closely match your natural teeth so that your appearance hardly changes. Modern dentures may even improve the look of your smile and help to
fill out the appearance of your face.
Will dentures change how I speak?
Pronouncing certain words may take practice. Reading out loud and repeating difficult words will help.
If you find that your dentures occasionally slip when you laugh, cough or smile, reposition them by gently biting down and swallowing. If this happens a lot, see your dentist.
My upper denture fits fine, so why am I having problems with my lower one?
The upper denture usually has much more suction to hold it in place. There is much less gum support in the lower jaw, so the lower denture may feel more wobbly because it has to be balanced between your cheeks and your tongue.
After a little while you will learn the shape of your new denture and how to keep it in place, even when you open your mouth wide.
Do I need to do anything special to care for my mouth?
Even with full dentures, you still need to take good care of your mouth. Every morning and evening, brush your gums, tongue and the roof of your mouth with a soft brush.
This removes plaque and helps the blood circulation in your mouth. If you wear partial dentures, it is even more important that you brush your teeth thoroughly every day. This will help stop tooth decay and gum disease that can lead to you losing more of your teeth. Your dentist may refer you to the hygienist to have your remaining natural teeth cleaned regularly.
How long will my dentures last?
If you treat your dentures well, they should last several years. However, your dentures will need to be relined or re-made because of normal wear, or a change in the shape of your mouth. Bone and gum ridges can shrink, causing your jaws to meet differently.
Loose dentures can cause discomfort, and health problems including sores and infections. A loose or badly fitting denture can also make eating and talking more difficult. It is important to replace worn or badly fitting dentures before they cause problems.
How often should I see my dentist?
Regular dental check-ups and having your teeth professionally cleaned are very important for keeping your teeth and gums healthy. Regular visits allow us to check the soft parts of your mouth, including your tongue and cheeks. These examinations are important so that we can spot any infections, mouth conditions or even mouth cancer at the earliest stages. If you have a full denture, check with us about how often you should visit.
Hazelwood Dental Practice,
Tel: 021 4866583
Fax: 021 4866583
Mon: 8.30am - 7.30pm
Tues: 8.00am -7.30pm
Wed & Thu: 8.00am - 6pm
Fri: 8.30am -6pm
Sat: By appointment only
Our early mornings from 8am and late evenings to 7.30pm are by appointment only. This is to accommodate our patients with busy schedules.