If you have lost most or all of your teeth, or your gums are
compromising your remaining teeth, you are a candidate for either
full or partial dentures.
With full dentures, a flesh-colored acrylic base fits over your
gums. The base of the upper denture covers the palate (the roof of
your mouth), while that of the lower denture is shaped like a
horseshoe to accommodate your tongue.
Dentures are custom-made in a dental laboratory from impressions
taken of your mouth. We will determine which of the two types of
dentures described below is best for you.
Conventional Full Denture
A conventional full denture is placed in your mouth after any remaining
teeth are removed and tissues have healed. Healing may take several
months, during which time you are without teeth.
Immediate Full Denture
An immediate full denture is inserted immediately after the remaining
teeth are removed. (Your dentist takes measurements and makes models of
your jaw during a prior visit.) While immediate dentures offer the
benefit of never having to be without your teeth, they must be relined
several months after being inserted. The reason is that the bone
supporting the teeth reshapes as it heals, causing the denture to become
A denture replaces missing teeth and adjacent
tissues. Unlike dental implants, a denture is removable. Made of
resin and porcelain, complete dentures are used to replace all the
teeth. When some healthy teeth remain, a partial denture can be
used. A partial denture also keeps the remaining healthy teeth
from shifting positions in the mouth.
Once the initial diagnosis is made and the decision to proceed with
dentures is made, we will make any necessary extractions of
compromised teeth. Once the gums are healed and healthy, the
dentist can proceed. First, an impression of the mouth is taken
and a wax -up is made to determine the most optimal position of
the jaw as well as the dimensions (size, shape, length, width) of
The wax up is sent to a dental laboratory to construct a
"try-in;" an initial set of dentures. The "try-in" is placed in
the mouth to assure comfort, fit, bite position and appearance.
Once the "try-in" is approved, the lab creates the final dentures.
The dentist will place the final dentures and make any necessary
Neuromuscular dentures, also known as precision fit dentures,
are preferred by patients because of their exceptional comfort and
natural appearance. Trips to the dental office for adjustments are
nearly eliminated, and no longer will you keep your dentures in
your pocket except for eating; truly a cosmetic improvement!
There are no known complications for the creation of dentures.
Dentures definitely provide a great smile with a very natural
appearance. They're made of very durable materials and last very
long when properly taken care of. Typically dentures last from
five to ten years. They also correct several problems, from speech
to chewing, for many patients.
How Long do Dentures Last?
Over a period of time, your denture will need to be relined, remade,
or rebased due to normal wear. Rebasing means making a new base
while keeping the existing denture teeth. Also, as you age, your
mouth naturally changes. These changes cause your dentures to
loosen, making chewing difficult and irritating your gums. At a
minimum, you should see your dentist annually for a checkup.
Here are tips for caring for your dentures:
When handling your dentures, stand over a folded towel or basin of
water. Dentures are delicate and may break if dropped.
Don't let your dentures dry out. Place them in a denture cleanser
soaking solution or in plain water when you're not wearing them. Never
use hot water, which can cause them to warp.
Brushing your dentures daily will remove food deposits and plaque, and
help prevent them from becoming stained. An ultrasonic cleaner may be
used to care for your dentures, but it does not replace a thorough daily
Brush your gums, tongue and palate every morning with a soft-bristled
brush before you insert your dentures. This stimulates circulation in
your tissues and helps remove plaque.
See your dentist if your dentures break, chip, crack or become loose.
Don't be tempted to adjust them yourself — this can damage them beyond