What is a Full Denture
A Full Denture is a removable appliance that replaces all of the missing teeth in the same arch. Therefore, a full denture procedure can be done to replace either all upper or all lower teeth. They are fabricated by the dental laboratory and made individually for every single patient. In case of complete loss of dentition, dentures allow patients to eat, speak, and smile with confidence.
How are Dentures Fabricated and What are They Made of
Multiple molds of the jaw are made to assure individual fitting of the denture. Various measurements such as profile, length of upper lip, and wideness of smile are very helpful to create an impeccable natural smile. Dentures are made from a set of plastic teeth imbedded in an acrylic base that hugs the gum and makes the denture retentive. The whole procedure takes between 3 and 4 appointments. Whether teeth have to be taken out (first denture), or replaced because of an existing denture, a denture needs to be accurately adjusted in the mouth on the day of the delivery for a proper fit and bite. Several adjustment appointments usually follow, due to the settling pain of the denture around the gums.
What is a Partial Denture
A Partial Denture is a removable appliance that replaces one or multiple missing teeth in the same jaw. There are several types of partial dentures that are available to patients; Stayplate, or temporary partial, is made out of acrylic with plastic teeth. It can replace all missing teeth in the same jaw, or just front ones for temporary esthetics. By definition, these dentures are made to be in the mouth for a maximum of a few months as an intermediate stage prior to a more permanent solution. Stayplates’ primary purpose is esthetics; therefore, chewing function is limited. Metal Partial, silver or clear, is done for long-term use to replace partially missing teeth and restore chewing function to an optimum level. It is made of a metal skeleton that grasps the partial onto the remaining teeth with acrylic attached to it supporting plastic teeth. Metal -based partials are very rigid and often done for elderly patients when severe arthritis in fingers requires a more stable grasp to maneuver the partial in and out. Flexible partial, originally carrying the name Valplast after the company who introduced the concept in dentistry, is made purely out of plastic prepared under high temperatures. Over the years, this material evolved in the laboratories of different companies with many choices of colors to match any possible coloration of the gums. These partials are very durable besides being the primary choice for esthetics. With the variety of options available to patients, the type of partial has to be carefully selected by dentist depending on the anatomy of the jaw and the habits of
the patient. In some instances, a combination of the above types can be recommended to achieve ultimate function and esthetics.
How Do I need to Care for My Denture
Dentures are usually soaked in various cleaning solutions for 10 to 30 min once-a-day. The type of cleaning solution is usually recommended by the dentist depending on the material the denture was fabricated from. After soaking, it is recommended to brush the denture with a medium toothbrush in tap water to remove broken down particles.
How Often Does the Denture Have to be Replaced
Replacement of dentures is recommended every 6-8 years based on the average lifespan of those dentures when the teeth begin to wear off and/or considerably lose their ideal function. Dentures are often replaced when the patient has had a sudden change in weight.