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Smiling couple with dentures
Dr Chris Darby

Dr Chris Darby

The Ultimate Guide to Dentures

Dentures are among the most common and cost effective ways of replacing missing teeth. They are often used for replacing one or multiple lost teeth*** tooth loss or for cases where implants and other methods aren’t possible. They are also more cost-effective than other tooth replacement techniques. Low-cost plus a natural-looking aesthetic makes dentures a popular choice in cosmetic and therapeutic dentistry.

The only drawback of dentures is that because they are removable, they do take some getting used to, and food tends to get under them when eating. They will move around in your mouth, which means you’ll need some practice to get used to eating, drinking and talking with them, and you will need to excuse yourself after each meal to rinse your mouth out.

How Do Dentures Work?

Dentures are designed to fit over your gums or rest between existing teeth. Each denture is custom-made to suit the shape of your bite, as well as the shape of any existing teeth. Dentures are built on a plastic or metal base plate, meaning the number and placement of teeth and be entirely customised to suit your needs and your mouth.

So, if you have lost a number of teeth, but they aren’t all in the same area, you can still make use of a denture treatment.

The Denture Process

This is the process you can expect while you get your dentures fitted:

  • The first step is an in-depth assessment of your gums, remaining teeth and the general health of your mouth. Dentures don’t address oral health issues, so it’s essential your mouth is healthy before they are fitted.
  • A cast or impressions will be taken of your teeth and gums. These casts will record the shape and size of your jaws, and make precise measurements of the spacing and alignment for your new teeth.
  • All diseased and loose teeth will be removed before the final dentures are created. If teeth can be saved, they will be, but sometimes it’s better to err on the side of caution and give you a fresh set of teeth. An immediate denture can be placed after tooth extraction so that you are never without teeth, but this depends on healing. Sometimes you will have to wait for the tissue to completely heal before the final denture or dentures can be fitted.
  • If required, any remaining teeth will be reshaped or modified to offer better support for the Care will be taken to preserve the structure, health and roots of the remaining teeth.

Follow-Up Care

Your dentist will schedule follow-up appointments to review your dentures. If you have any remaining teeth, check-ups should be planned for every six months. Patients with full dentures will be scheduled for a yearly visit. However, if you feel any pinching or discomfort, you should visit your dentist to have the dentures readjusted.

Looking after your dentures is easy. Just follow a good oral health program. You should rinse your dentures after each meal with a normal tooth brush and soap, not tooth paste. Tooth paste should not be used to clean your plastic dentures. Tooth paste is abrasive the dentures will pick up stains. It’s essential that you never allow your dentures to dry out or get hot. If they do, your dentures will warp and become damaged.

Deciding If Dentures Are Right For You

Dentures are a replacement option for missing teeth, but they do not address oral health. In fact, poor oral health outcomes, such as gum disease and infection can actually prevent you from having dentures. Often, health has to be secured before they can be installed.

Your dentist is the best person to decide if dentures are the best option for you. The final decision will be based on factors like your age, the scale of tooth loss, as well as your history and prognosis for dental health. Budget will also be a factor in determining whether you go for dentures or a more permanent option like implants.

Dentures are an incredibly useful means of replacing missing teeth, and they do more than that. They can restore confidence in people and even improve facial appearance. Without teeth, the muscles in your face can sag, making you look prematurely old. It’s incredible how much younger and healthier people look after issue of well constructed denture treatment.

How to Avoid Needing Dentures

Prevention is always better than cure. There’s a lot you can do to prevent yourself from losing teeth and needing a replacement method. Here’s what you can do to keep your teeth healthy and strong:

  • Brush at least twice a day using the proper technique. This means holding the brush at a 45-degree angle and using gentle, circular actions to clean all the way up to and under the gum line
  • Floss every day, all the way up and under the gum line
  • Eat a nutritious diet full of whole foods, and avoid sugary and acidic foods and drinks
  • Visit your dentist at least twice a year for a check-up and a professional clean – this is the only way to adequately protect against tooth and gum destroying bacteria and plaque.

If you would like more information or to book an appointment, please contact us.

 

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