Dentures are removable oral prosthetics for replacing missing teeth. They are meant to mimic natural teeth are made from porcelain, ceramic, or acrylic since these materials resemble your teeth’s natural color. However, patients can also opt for purely functional dentures made from cobalt and chromium. Dentures replace missing teeth to restore your smile, allowing normal eating and the proper articulation of words.
Good dental care could reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.
The first step in getting dentures is consulting the dentist, in this case, Dr. Sinha. They’ll examine your teeth and oral cavity to decide whether dentures are a good option for you. In cases of severe decay, they might take X-rays to check the extent of the decay. If you get the green light you can move to the next step.
The second step involves the dentist taking impressions of your teeth and mouth using a custom tray and a wax bite. These impressions will form the design basis for the mold that’ll create your dentures. You’ll work with the dentist to determine the color, shape, and size of your dentures.
The dentist will design your denture and invite you to try it on. This ”try-in” dental appointment involves your trying on a wax-based denture to see how they fit and whether the colors match your current teeth. You may need several of these appointments before you find perfect fitting dentures for your mouth.
The dentist will make tiny alterations to the dentures to ensure they fit perfectly. You’ll have to try them on to determine whether they fit and feel comfortable. If they do, you can wear them home until the next visit. You’ll also receive advice on how to maintain your dentures and dates for follow-up appointments.
Complete dentures are dentures that fit both your upper and lower jaw. These dentures are ideal if you have missing teeth in both jaws. The dentist will determine whether you need full dentures, depending on how many teeth you have on each jaw. Full dentures allow your jaw and mouth to work properly and restore your facial features.
Partial dentures are suitable for people with a couple of missing teeth on either jaw. You must have healthy gums and considerable jaw bone mass to qualify for these dentures. After the initial consultation, your perfectly fitting dentures will be ready in 6 to 8 weeks.
Improper denture care can lead to a dangerous condition called denture stomatitis?
Dentures are temporary prosthetics that only last for about seven to ten years before they need replacement. How well you care for your dentures plays a crucial part in determining their longevity. However, low-quality or poorly installed dentures will have short lifespans regardless of how well you take care of them.
Full dentures contain 12 to 14 teeth per arch. That’s 12 teeth in the upper jaw and 12 more in the lower jaw totaling 24 in the mouth. Alternatively, you can have 14 teeth in the upper and lower jaw, which equals a total of 28 teeth in the dentures.
However, it’s worth noting that not everyone requires a full set of dentures. Some people only need partial dentures that replace a couple of teeth in their mouths. As such, the number of teeth dentists put in dentures depends on how many missing teeth you have. Dentists might even recommend dental implants in cases where dentures fall short.
The denture process is completely painless save for some minor discomfort that disappears in days. The dentist first takes impressions of your teeth using a putty-like substance or a digital scanner. Impression-taking is painless and only takes a couple of minutes at most. The dentist then sends the impressions to a lab and schedules an appointment when they’re ready to fit them into your mouth.
It’s worth noting that implant-supported dentures might require the installation of dental implants. Installing implants involves drilling small titanium posts into the jaw bone and attaching prosthetic teeth to them. Dentists use a local anesthetic to numb the pain when getting dental implants, but you’ll feel mild pain and discomfort for a few days following the procedure.
You should specifically avoid eating any hard, crunchy, or spicy foods after getting your dentures. Instead, patients should adopt a soft diet consisting of mainly pureed foods and liquids. Some food you could include in your diet include scrambled eggs, pudding, mashed potatoes, and pasta.
Ensure you eat slowly in small chunks to minimize chewing. Also, eat your food with a drink to help with chewing. Don’t forget to chew with both sides to keep your dentures stable. Foods to avoid while wearing dentures include steak, toffee, caramel, and spicy food like salsa.
Dentures take some time to get used to, and it’s normal for your gums to feel sore and your mouth uncomfortable. Dentists recommend sticking to liquids and soft foods for the first few weeks as your gums get used to the dentures. After two weeks or so, you can start introducing hard foods like chicken or salmon. During this time, check how chewing affects your mouth and if eating these foods makes your gums sore.
After three weeks, you can try eating chewy foods like steak but remember to chew slowly and bite small pieces at a time. If you can chew comfortably without any soreness, then you can resume your normal diet.
Maintaining good oral hygiene is still important even if you have dentures.