Dentures, also known as false teeth, are prosthetic devices constructed to replace missing teeth, and which are supported by surrounding soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity. Conventional dentures are removable, however there are many different denture designs, some which rely on bonding or clasping onto teeth or dental implants. There are two main categories of dentures, depending on whether they are used to replace missing teeth on the mandibular arch or the maxillary arch.
Conversely, complete dentures or full dentures are worn by patients who are missing all of the teeth in a single arch (i.e. the maxillary (upper) or mandibular (lower) arch).
Patients can become entirely edentulous (without teeth) for many reasons, the most prevalent being removal because of dental disease typically relating to oral flora control, i.e. periodontal disease and tooth decay. Other reasons include tooth developmental defects caused by severe malnutrition, genetic defects such as dentinogenesis imperfecta, trauma, or drug use.
Dentures can help patients through:
- Mastication as chewing ability is improved by replacing edentulous areas with denture teeth.
- Aesthetics because the presence of teeth provide a natural facial appearance, and wearing a denture to replace missing teeth provides support for the lips and cheeks and corrects the collapsed appearance that occurs after losing teeth.
- The improvement of pronunciation of those words containing sibilants or fricatives by replacing missing teeth, especially the anteriors enabling patients to speak better.
- Improving Self-Esteem
Partial Dentures provide an excellent solution for those with missing or unhealthy teeth. If you have a few missing teeth while the surrounding teeth still remain healthy you should consider partial dentures either fixed in place or removable. Your dentist will discuss the options with you upon giving you a consultation. Your new dentures will help you retain your natural smile while relieving you from worrying about difficulty eating and socializing. Due to the advancements in dentistry fixed and removable partial dentures are not only affordable but offer a permanent solution to your missing teeth.
If you are experiencing tooth decay your local dentist will most likely suggest that these teeth be extracted as soon as possible to avoid decay of surrounding teeth. You should not be concerned about having missing teeth in your mouth once they are extracted as you will receive a temporary to retain your appearance. Once the lab has completed your permanent denture the dentist will remove the temporary and place your new denture. Once your denture is in place the dentist will go over how you should care for your new denture. At this point you can rest assured that you have now taken a step in the right direction to preserving your overall oral health and appearance. It will be very difficult for you tell the difference between your natural teeth and the new ones. Therefore once you get accustomed to your partial dentures it will be very difficult to remember that you have them due to the comfort.
Partial Dentures will provide you with many benefits. One of the most important advantages is the ability to enjoy eating the foods you love without difficulty chewing. Secondly, they will help promote good oral hygiene. If you do not wear dentures and have missing teeth you'll find that after eating there will be food stuck in the areas where teeth are not present. Eventually this will cause damage or infection in the gums or begin causing problems with the adjacent teeth.
Some types of Partials will typically last between 10 and 15 years. This estimate is based on the quality of the denture along with how well you take care of them. You should also schedule routine checkups with your dentist in order to make any adjustments or repairs to your dentures to increase the life of them.
Here are a few different types of partial dentures:
- Cast Metal Framework - These partials are fabricated using metal alloys and resin saddles.
- Acrylic Partials - Acrylic partials are usually low cost as they are made of acrylic. They are not as strong as dentures with metal framework and do not last as long.
- Flexible Partials