A denture is a removable appliance which can be used to replace one, several or even all of your teeth. They are most commonly known as ‘false teeth’. Dentures have been used successfully for many years as a way of returning look and function to the mouth. They can also make a significant impact on the overall appearance of your face by supporting facial features such as the cheeks and lips.
Dentures are normally removable but can be fixed with denture implants.
A partial denture is used to replace some of the teeth while a full denture will replace all of them.
Some people have struggled with uncomfortable or unattractive dentures in the past and this can be off putting. Do bear in mind that modern dentures are very natural looking. They fit much more securely and comfortably and are made from high quality materials meaning that you can feel confident and assured when eating, talking and smiling.
Types of Dentures
Valplast (flexible dentures)
These are more flexible than normal acrylic dentures so can be adapted to flex and grip around teeth. This gives the denture more comfort and they feel more secure. Valplast also has no metal components giving it a natural look.
Chrome (metal frame dentures)
Extremely light weight and durable, chrome dentures can be made with specific attachments to hold on to existing teeth in the mouth for extra stability. They can be made in thin sections to avoid the bulky feeling often found with traditional acrylic dentures.
How is a denture made?
The process normally takes around 4-6 weeks from start to finish with a period of around a week between appointments.
- Initial consultation to check your existing teeth and gums and produce a detailed treatment plan.
- Impressions, photographs and X-rays of your mouth will be taken and used to make a wax model of your dentures.
- The wax model will be checked for fit and comfort. Once you are completely happy it will be used to produce your final denture.
- You will attend a final fitting appointment.
- Check-up appointment (around 1 week later).
What will it look like?
Your denture will be made from a gum coloured plastic arch with tooth coloured crowns attached as required. A partial denture will have small metal hooks so that it can be anchored in place by your existing teeth. A full denture will fit similarly to a removable brace.
If required, and your gums are healthy enough, dentures can also be fixed with implants for a more secure fit.
What will my dentures feel like?
It can take some time to get used to your new dentures, particularly if you’ve had several missing teeth for a while. You will not only notice a change in the function of your mouth but the way you look too.
- Initially you may find it strange when eating- starting with a softer diet and introducing other food items overtime will help.
- If your speech is affected then practice talking when you are alone –repeating more difficult words or perhaps reading aloud to yourself.
- If your dentures rub or feel sore they may need adjusting- please contact us at the earliest opportunity.
Looking after your dentures:
With good care and attention dentures can last for many years. Here are some tips to help keep your dentures clean and functional:
- Dentures should be removed at night (unless advised otherwise) so that they can be cleaned and your gums can rest.
- Brush your denture with a soft toothbrush or a special denture brush. Never use normal toothpaste- special denture cream is available.
- If you do have any remaining teeth then make sure you brush these – as well as your gums to make sure they stay healthy too.
- Ensure you attend regular dental check-ups to maintain the health of your mouth and ensure that your denture always fits comfortably and securely.
If you do have any problems at all with your dentures, including pain, if they start to feel loose or make strange noises (such as clicking) then please get in contact with us straight away.