With our teeth being the foundation of our smile, and many other actions, they can have a significant impact on the way we go about our daily lives. Not only do they influence the way we present ourselves, but also how we talk and how we eat. Their absence can largely affect how we perceive ourselves and how others may view us.
Therefore, if we are lacking a couple or all of our teeth, then our quality of life and self-esteem levels can be compromised. One solution to replacing these lost or missing teeth is to have dentures fitted by your dentist.
Types of dentures
Dentures are an effective replacement for teeth lost to decay, gum disease, or trauma. If you have experienced partial or total tooth loss, it’s likely your dentist will recommend you about having dentures made.
Dentures are typically made of acrylic and resin, specialist plastics and sometimes lightweight metal and are designed to look like your natural teeth.
There are three main types of dentures:
1. A full denture
Replacing all your natural teeth, these sit on top of your gums, supporting your face and giving it a natural frame.
2. A partial denture
Replacing lost or missing teeth, this is held in position with clasps around your existing teeth and may have a cobalt-chrome base for added security.
3. Implant retained denture
An alternative to typical dentures, these replace one or more single teeth and are held in position by implants fixed into the jaw.
Dentures are customised by your dentist or prosthetist to fit your mouth to prevent them from causing the bleeding of gums, swelling, and ulcers; nevertheless, even perfectly made dentures will feel a little uncomfortable in the beginning as you adjust to how they feel in your mouth. Eating and speaking with dentures might take a little getting used to. A bulky or loose feeling is not uncommon, while the muscles of your cheeks and tongue learn to hold your dentures in place. Excessive saliva flow, a feeling that the tongue does not have adequate room, and minor irritation or soreness are also not unusual. In some cases, you may need to revisit your dentist for minor adjustments.
Taking care of dentures is surprisingly simple. Dentures should be placed in a denture cleanser soaking solution or in plain water when you're not wearing them. It is however necessary to brush the dentures, as you would with normal teeth, and this should be done before you put them back into your mouth. When handling your dentures, stand over a folded towel or basin of water. Dentures are fragile and may break if dropped. Although your teeth are artificial, it is still required that you visit your dentist regularly so they can ensure they are fitting you correctly and remain beneficial to your oral health.
*image courtesy of ADA