What are dentures?
Dentures are a set of false teeth that enable individuals to eat and smile with confidence. They are usually made from lifelike resin teeth bonded to a plastic base.
You may have a ‘complete’ or ‘full’ set of denture which replaces all the natural teeth in either the upper or lower jaw , or a ‘partial’ set to fill in the spaces left by missing teeth.
What precautions do we need to take with denture use?
Dentures are fragile. Refrain from using harsh abrasive cleansers as they may scratch the surface. Never sterilize your dentures in boiling water. Keep them safely if you remove them as they may break if dropped.
What is the process for dentures?
The dentist will first examine you and determine if dentures are suitable. Other options to replace missing teeth include bridge and implants.
Measurements and impressions of your mouth are taken. This is then sent to a dental technician in a laboratory for construction. Laboratory work is involved at every step of the denture process.
A second impression may be required on the second visit as well. You and the dentist can decide the colour of your denture teeth. The dentist will check how you bite using a wax build-up in the areas of your missing teeth. At another visit, the denture teeth set on the wax build-up will be tried again. If satisfactory, the denture will be manufactured and fitted in the final visit.
Sometimes, certain steps have to be repeated in order to achieve a good outcome for you so that you can bite well and have a great smile. In certain cases, some steps can be skipped.
Will new dentures be comfortable?
New or modified dentures may feel strange at first and can affect your speech and eating. Start with eating soft foods cut into small pieces. Chew slowly using both sides of your mouth at the same time to stop the denture from moving. Reading out loud and repeating words will help. The more you wear them, the better they will feel as the mouth needs time to adapt to the new shape. Keep on trying!
A lower denture usually takes more time to adjust to than an upper denture due to your tongue and cheeks. You can contact your dentist if you have any other questions or trouble with your new dentures.
How can we take care of our dentures?
- Dentures need to be removed and brushed daily with your toothbrush and denture cleanser.
- Remove your dentures at night to allow the gum tissue to rest.
- Soak your dentures with denture cleansing tablet and water overnight everyday.
- Have your dental check every 6 months so the dentist can examine your oral cavity for signs of disease or oral cancer.
How can we manage loose dentures?
Dentures usually need to be altered from time to time. That’s because the gums and bone supporting the dentures change over time. Thus your dentures may not fit well and become loose.
- The dentures may need to be redone.
- Denture adhesive paste helps denture wearers to use dentures more easily.Some people find it difficult to get used to a denture, even when it fits well. They are concerned that it may slip or fall out. Using a denture adhesive can ease some of these worries.
- Implants may be placed to hold the dentures better. The implants are anchored in bone with only tiny stubs above the gum. These fixtures anchor to the denture to stabilize it & prevent it from moving around.
Is it better to extract all my teeth and make a denture?
It is not advisable to extract all your teeth to make a denture. Saving even a few natural teeth is often better than losing them all. Natural teeth can help you retain bone in your jaw and bear some chewing pressure which helps reduce pressure on other areas of the jaw. They also can act as stable support so your denture is unlikely to shift in your mouth.
You feel a better sense of where your jaw is in place and the pressure you are placing on the denture if you have not lost all of your teeth. It will be easier to wear your dentures if you have kept some teeth.
How long do I have to wait to do a new denture after extractions?
About 8 weeks after you have lost your teeth, either naturally or by extraction, the wounds would have healed. Then your dentist can begin the process of making your denture.