Dentures are removable appliances that can replace missing teeth and surrounding tissues. Dentures may be recommended to patients who have lost some or all of their natural teeth, whether from gum disease, tooth decay or injury.
Dentures are made to closely resemble a patient’s natural teeth and can greatly improve patients’ quality of life by making it easier for them to speak and eat and improving the look of their smile.
Types of Dentures
Complete dentures are used when all teeth are missing. They may be either “conventional” or “immediate.”
Conventional dentures are made after the teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has begun to heal. It can be placed in the mouth about eight to 12 weeks after the teeth have been removed. Immediate dentures, on the other hand, are made in advance and can be positioned as soon as the teeth are removed.
Partial dentures are used when a patient has one or more natural teeth remaining in the jaw.
With partial dentures, a fixed bridge replaces one or more teeth by placing crowns on the teeth on either side of the space and attaching artificial teeth to them. This “bridge” is then cemented into place to create a natural-looking smile. Partial dentures not only replace teeth that are missing, they also prevent other natural teeth from moving and changing the look of your teeth.
How Dentures Are Made
To make your dentures, your dentist will take the following steps:
- Create a series of impressions of your jaw and take measurements of how your jaws relate to one another and how much space is between them.
- Create models, wax forms, and/or plastic patterns in the exact shape and position of the denture to be made. The patient will test the model several times and the denture will be assessed for color, shape, and fit before the final denture is cast.
- Cast a final denture.
- Your dentist will make adjustments as necessary after follow-up appointments.
In some cases, dental implants can be used to support cemented bridges, eliminating the need for a denture. The cost is usually greater, but the implants and bridges more closely resemble the feel of real teeth. Not everyone is a candidate for dental implants, however. Your dentist will work with you to determine the best treatment for your missing teeth.
Our experienced dentists can create a personalized set of dentures that will help you restore your natural smile. If you’re interested in either complete or partial dentures to replace your missing teeth, call us at 585-486-4664 or fill out this form to schedule an appointment for a consultation.