The Different Types of Dentures
Contrary to popular belief, losing teeth is not a normal sign of getting older. If you begin losing teeth it is a sign that your mouth needs help and you should schedule a dental visit right away. An appointment at Fuqua Advanced Dental will allow us to find out what is causing your tooth loss and determine if you might be a candidate for dentures.
Dentures are false teeth designed to replace missing teeth. They can provide you with a more youthful look and allow you to eat and speak more easily. There are several different types of dentures, all of which can fit comfortably in your mouth and give the appearance of a healthy, natural smile.
Full dentures are for the most extensive cases of tooth loss, where the majority, if not all of a patient’s teeth have been lost. They are designed to replace all of the teeth on the upper or lower jaw. Custom made for patients, dentures are the most reliable and affordable way to maintain strong facial structure, keep a youthful appearance and continue speaking and eating normally. Additionally, dentures are removable, which allows for easy cleaning. While a full set of dentures can be beneficial, however, there can also be some drawbacks. Full dentures can cause gradual bone loss due to the pressure they put on the insides of the mouth and on the jaw, and the tongue can inadvertently shift the denture out of place.
Partial dentures are able to replace several teeth scattered along the upper or lower jaw. They are removable but are attached to the remaining teeth in the jaw, providing a stable hold. The gum colored area of the partial dentures can easily be blended in with your natural gums but do come with removable metal clasps or attachments designed to hold the denture in place. As with full dentures, partial dentures can be easily taken out and cleaned with ease. It is especially important to take out partial dentures to care for your mouth because these dentures can shift occasionally, loosening the anchor teeth and causing food to get stuck underneath or between the dentures.
Implant-supported dentures, or overdentures, provide the tightest hold of all the denture types. These dentures typically require two dental implants in the bottom of the jaw and four implants in the top of the jaw, but can vary patient to patient. These implants prevent any slipping, provide strong stability and help maintain bone volume, unlike other dentures, by reducing pressure inside the mouth. There are no real drawbacks to implant-supported dentures aside from the requirement of needing a number of implants to hold them in place. Overdentures can be placed over crowns and other implants to provide the most effective, longest lasting solution to needing dentures.
Immediate dentures provide a temporary solution for the gaps left by extracted teeth. Measurements and models of your mouth are taken during a preliminary dental visit. Then, when a tooth or multiple teeth are extracted immediate dentures can be placed on the space and kept there during the healing process. The primary goal of this process is to make sure the patient is not without teeth while waiting for their mouth to heal and a more permanent solution to be put in place.
No matter the type, all dentures first start with a discussion between you and your prosthodontist. If you are concerned with tooth loss, take the first step and make an appointment. Dr. Steven Fuqua of Fuqua Advanced Dental has received advanced training and specializes in replacing and restoring teeth. If you would like to make an appointment with Dr. Fuqua or want any additional information about dentures or other dental services, please contact our office in Southlake.