When you are missing several teeth, a partial denture is a good and economical option to replace those teeth. A partial denture is a custom fitted appliance that attaches to your natural teeth and has false teeth on it to replace all the teeth that you are missing in either your top or bottom jaw.
Your dentist will evaluate your dental condition and help you to choose the best type of partial denture for you. Making the partial denture will involve some or all of these steps:
- Impressions: On the first visit, and impression of your existing teeth and gums will be made. Small depressions may be made in your existing teeth to make room for the partial denture to attach. A model of your teeth will be made from this impression. The dental laboratory will use this model to make your partial denture.
- Framework try-in: The base of the partial denture will be tried in for adequate fit. The dentist will then take a record of how your teeth bite together.
- Final try-in: Another try-in may be done with the teeth in place. This will give you a chance to see how the teeth look and function. Any changes you desire can be made at this time.
- Delivery: Your final partial denture will be placed. The dentist will adjust any areas that may be causing you discomfort and check the partial denture for proper fit and function.
- Adjustments: As with anything new, you may find that your partial denture causes some areas of irritation in your gums. It is important to notify your dentist of these areas so that the partial denture can be adjusted to fit comfortably. You may need several adjustments until you are fully comfortable with your partial denture.
When you are missing all of the teeth in one or both jaws, a complete denture is a good and economical option to replace them. Teeth may already be missing or you may have existing teeth that need to be removed. In either case, the denture will be custom fitted for your mouth to achieve the best possible fit, cosmetics, and function.
When the remaining teeth need to be removed, an immediate denture can be made. This denture is made by first taking an impression of your existing teeth/jaws. The dental laboratory uses this impression to fabricate a denture. When the teeth are extracted, this denture can be placed immediately that day so that you do not need to go without your teeth.
After the procedure is complete, you will often have soreness. This soreness is caused by a combination of the healing process from the extractions and the denture. Your dentist can evaluate the denture and make any necessary adjustments to make you comfortable.
The healing process after extractions takes time. The gums typically close in 1-2 weeks. However, the bone that was supporting the teeth takes months to fill in and stabilize. This can cause changes in the fit of the denture.
Sometimes the base of the denture may need to be refitted in a process called a laboratory reline. This simple procedure is typically done in one day and can dramatically improve the fit of the denture.
Traditional Complete Denture:
A complete denture is used to replace all of the missing teeth in one or both jaws. This could be a first denture or a new denture to replace one that has become overly worn and ill-fitting.
Either way, the process involves some or all of the following steps:
- Impressions: Impressions are made of the top and bottom jaws and any remaining teeth. These impressions are used to make models of the jaws. These models are used by the dental laboratory to fabricate the dentures.
- Bite registration: This visit involves taking measurements and using them to establish how the jaws bite together. The laboratory uses these records to place the teeth.
- Try-in: This visit involves a try-in of the denture teeth surrounded by wax. This allows you to see the cosmetics and function of the denture. Any desired changes can be made at this visit.
- Delivery: When your dentures are complete, they will be checked for proper fit and function. You will be given instructions on the care and use of your dentures.
- Adjustments: As you are getting used to your new dentures, you may develop some sore areas in your gums. It is important to notify your dentist of these sore spots. The denture can be adjusted in these areas to relieve the discomfort.
Teeth whitening is ideal for people who have healthy, unrestored teeth (no fillings) and gums.
Key aspects to know.
- Remove your dentures (complete or partial) each night. This gives the gum tissue a chance to rest and helps to prevent infections and irritations of the gums.
- Clean dentures daily. Dentures should be brushed each day with a soft bristle brush and soap and water. Toothpaste should not be used because it can cause excessive wear to the dentures.
- Remove and rinse dentures after eating. Dentures can collect food debris around and beneath them. They should be removed and rinsed after each meal. This helps to prevent tooth decay (with partial dentures) and irritation to the gums.
- Soak dentures when you are not wearing them. Dentures should be kept wet at all times. When you have removed them, they should be placed in a container with water. If they are allowed to dry out or left in the sun, they may no longer fit properly. Denture cleaners can be used with the water to remove built up deposits and freshen dentures. Denture cleaners are specific for complete or partial dentures. The appropriate cleaner should be used for your type of appliance.
- Never use bleach to clean dentures. It can cause discoloration of the pink part of the denture.
- Denture adhesives can be used to help stabilize dentures. These adhesives should be used as directed on the label. Excess use of adhesives can be damaging to your health.
- Even if you have no remaining teeth, it is important to see a dentist regularly. The dentist will check the fit of your dentures. Your gums will also be checked for any abnormalities or possible signs of oral cancer.