Losing teeth due to aging, accidents, trauma or injury to the mouth are all situations that require teeth to be replaced. With a new set of teeth, people can continue their earlier lifestyle with the same confidence they had before. Dentures are an affordable solution for people who have lost teeth and a significant number of elderly people prefer this.
Dentures offer replacement teeth options and they come in two types – offering complete teeth replacement or partial teeth replacement. In complete teeth replacement, the whole set of teeth is replaced using dentures while partial dentures offer replacement options to either the upper jaw or lower jaw.
Dentures are created by following a thorough process. It requires time and a few consultations with the dentist.
First, the dentist will take an impression of the mouth. These measurements will help the formation of moulds for the teeth that will serve as replacement teeth. Few appointments are planned to try these moulds out.
The final set of dentures are made after ascertaining the best fit. The colour of the teeth is also chosen to match the natural teeth so it is not obvious that the person is wearing replacement teeth.
Who is the ideal candidate for dentures?
While dentures are a good option for replacement teeth, not everyone may benefit from this dental appliance. A dental procedure or device is useful only if they offer good support to the oral and dental health of the person. This requires the assessment of a dental professional.
If the person is missing several teeth, then they will get help from dentures. Loss of teeth can be due to teeth decay or damage. When several teeth are lost, it will affect the chewing function of the person. It will also affect the facial structure with the muscles sagging due to no proper support from the dental structure in the mouth.
Dentures are made after taking measurements of the jaw line and fitting artificial teeth on them according to the dental framework. When there is more than one tooth missing, dentists can take measurements and make replacement teeth according to the need. You can use partial dentures or complete dentures as recommended by the dentist.
It is not just loss of teeth that requires placing dentures. Another serious concern, gum disease also affects oral health. It infects the gums rendering it unable to support the dental structure.
In the later stages of gum disease, the teeth come out loose and fall off. This situation can be averted if dental support is provided with timely consultation. However, if this does not happen, then the bone tissues will be affected and bone loss is experienced. In this case, the damaged teeth are removed and after the gum and bone tissues heal, dentures can be placed.
In some cases, the bone loss is severe and dental implants are not possible as the bone structure is not adequate to support the replacement teeth. In those cases, dentures are the best option.
In some people, teeth fall out and there is a space between two teeth. Due to this available space the neighbouring teeth will shift towards the space available. This will cause a change in the position of the teeth and the teeth alignment is lost. If the lost teeth are not visible and are placed at the back of the mouth, many prefer not to have a replacement for the lost tooth. In such a case, the teeth at the back of the mouth will slowly shift their position and affect the dental alignment. It is important that even the single tooth that is missing is replaced by using dentures.
When it is not the best option
Dentures are not the best option for everyone who has lost teeth. Some who have oral cancer might have their oral cavity with changes that are affected both health-wise and structure-wise. In this case, dentures might not be a good solution. Dentists will recommend other procedures that are suitable to them.
There are other options like ‘flipper’ as they are lightweight and are suitable if there is loss of just one tooth. It is important that during dental consultations all the doubts and concerns one might have regarding dentures be clarified with the dentist. Providing information on other medical concerns that a person might have, long term medication if taken should all be discussed. These are important information that will help the dentist make the correct decision.
Caring for dentures
Caring for dentures is important to ensure the durability of dentures. Some dentists will suggest wearing dentures throughout for a few days till the person is comfortable with the appliance. After that, they will recommend removing them at night time. This will help give a time of rest for the gum tissues.
Keep the dentures in liquid after removal. It is important that they don’t go dry as it will affect their properties. Handle them with care and take care not to drop them – they are fragile and can break. It is important to replace them if there are any damages. Take the dentures to the dental clinic instead of trying to fix them at home.
Wearing dentures requires some time to get used to – so one should be aware that they will soon feel natural after wearing them constantly. Cleaning dentures like normal teeth is important as food particles can get stuck on them and they can damage the replacement teeth. If dentures are not fit properly, then food particles might also get stuck under them, or between the dentures and them gum and attract bacterial action. If thorough cleaning is not done, then this will cause inflammation in the gum tissues and affect the oral health of the person. Having good oral and dental hygiene is important, as this can affect the general health of a person as well.
If you are thinking of getting dentures to replace your missing teeth, schedule a consultation with your dental clinic and they will help you.