What are Complete Dentures?
Complete dentures are a full set of false teeth for replacing all the natural teeth on one or both jaws. They are usually made of acrylic (plastic) or metal, or a mixture of both. The base of the denture is designed to look like you gums, and you can be rest assured that the teeth of the dentures look very natural with modern dentures. Complete dentures are a great way to restore functionality and aesthetic appearance after the loss of teeth through decay or accident
Why Would I Need Complete Dentures?
If the majority of your teeth are missing, and the dentist feels that those remaining would benefit from extraction, a complete denture is your best option to retain your quality of life. Having a full set of teeth is important for many aspects of your life as well as your oral health. Teeth are not only important for eating and speech, but they also provide essential support for your lips and cheeks.
Without them, your face may sag, and this can cause a change to your facial character which can have a detrimental effect on a person’s self esteem. Having functioning teeth through dentures will also help to keep your gums and bones healthy, and who can forget the immense benefit of being able to eat the foods you may not have had in a while if you have lost teeth. A complete set of dentures can restore your confidence, your looks and your health.
What’s the Complete Denture Procedure?
Your dentist will give you a thorough examination and consultation before deciding on a course of action. With modern advances in dentistry, sometimes it’s possible to restore your mouth to health without needing to remove any remaining natural teeth. However, if you do need a denture, the process will start with any necessary extractions and treatments to get your gums to full health. There may be a few months of waiting for your gums to properly heal after such treatment. Usually if you have extractions your dentist will provide you with immediate dentures to wear during this healing time.
The dentist will take impressions of your gums and use these to model your new dentures. These should be a perfect fit for your mouth, in which case no fixatives are needed because good dentures are held in place by the suction of your gums. However, dentures on the lower jaw are more prone to wobble than dentures on your upper jaw, so it may take longer to adjust to them and learn how to keep them in place.
Will my Complete Dentures Come Loose Over Time?
Most people will find that their dentures become loose over time, and when this happens they can start to irritate the gums and cause soreness to the gums. If this happens, you could use a fixative as a temporary measure and make an appointment to get your dentures replaced. Dentures will last several years, but as the structure of your mouth changes with age they will need to be replaced to avoid infection and irritation.
Things to Think About
Eating with a complete denture may prove difficult at first, as might speech, but you will get used to both. You need to take good care of both your mouth and your dentures, cleaning your gums with a soft toothbrush and brushing your dentures regularly too. The general rule is ‘brush, soak, brush’, and this will remove all the debris built up on your complete dentures. Dentists usually recommend a soft to medium headed toothbrush, and you should treat your dentures gently applying minimal force. It is recommended that you take them out at night to rest your gums, and soak the dentures in a glass of water.