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Dentures: Questions and Answers

If you are considering dentures for yourself or a loved one, the information below will help you better understand the procedure and review your options.

You can also contact Dr. Goldman's office to schedule a $59 consultation that includes the required exam and x-rays. Call 561-967-8666 or click here to schedule online.

What are dentures?

Dentures are artificial substitutes for your natural teeth and the tissue that surrounds them.

There are several different types of dentures, ranging from a complete set that replaces all of your teeth, to partial dentures designed to replace only a few missing teeth. Any of these fall under the general category of dentures.

What are the benefits of dentures?

There are definite advantages to having replacement teeth compared to either leaving teeth missing or to leaving decaying teeth in your mouth.

  1. Dentures help keep facial muscles from sagging, which can make a person look older.
  2. You will be able to eat and speak – something people often take for granted until they begin to lose their natural teeth. If you have had problems with your natural teeth for some time, you may have already had problems eating foods you want.
  3. You will be able to smile confidently.

Not everyone will need dentures in their lifetime. But for those who do need them, dentures can make it possible to continue living an enjoyable life.

Are all dentures the same?

No. Maintaining good oral health is important to denture wearers. Some places will sell you an off-the-shelf product or less than a customized denture. Poor-fitting dentures cause chronic irritation, contributing to mouth sores and changes in the bone or gum tissues.

Dr. Goldman wants you to enjoy a comfortable fit, and will carefully measure and prepare your mouth for custom dentures that will provide you with maximum comfort.

What different types of dentures are available?

There are four main types of dentures to consider.

Complete Dentures

When most people think of dentures, they tend to picture complete dentures, which are full replacements for all of your teeth. This can be a full set of either upper or lower teeth, or a combined set for your entire mouth.

Complete dentures have to be properly fitted for optimum comfort and can last 5 to 10 years given proper care. These can typically be made six months after tooth extraction, once your gums have had time to heal.

Immediate Dentures

Immediate dentures are put into place immediately after tooth extraction and are used as a temporary set while your bone and tissue stabilize following tooth extraction. There are a number of benefits to immediate dentures, although they may require frequent adjustments while your jaw heals into place.

For more information about Dr. Goldman's immediate dentures and what you can expect for your first set, click here.

Overdentures

Overdentures are similar to complete dentures. The difference is that not all teeth are extracted and one or more natural teeth are used for support. This type of denture provides greater stabilization during chewing. Overdentures can be more costly than complete dentures and usually require more appointments to get them properly fitted in place.

Partial Dentures

Partial dentures are designed to correct the gaps in your smile when only some of your teeth are missing. Metal attachments anchor the dentures to your natural teeth. Partial dentures maintain tooth alignment by preventing your remaining teeth from shifting. Partial dentures can also help you prevent further tooth loss due to decay or gum disease.

Dr. Goldman also provides precision partial dentures, a special type of partial denture that is anchored without using visible metal clasps or wires. Click here to find out more.

Will my eating habits need to change?

There are very few eating restrictions for denture wearers, once you get used to wearing them. However dentures are mere substitutes and not as efficient as real teeth.

If you experience eating difficulties at any time, it is important to contact your dentist. Poor-fitting dentures can contribute to eating difficulties. Dentures that fit right are vital for enjoying a well-balanced diet that includes a wide assortment of foods.

Do I have to wear denture adhesives?

Dentures are custom-designed for a comfortable and good fit for you. As a result, they often don't require the regular use of an adhesive. Poor-fitting dentures must be checked by your dentist as soon as possible to eliminate discomfort and the potential for irritation.

Will my new dentures last a lifetime?

Dentures are very durable but that doesn't make them indestructible. They can discolor, chip, break, and bend out of shape. With good care, affordable dentures should last for many years. Here are some tips for maintaining the appearance and extending the life of your dentures:

  • Use a brush designed specifically for dentures and a denture cleaner. Regular toothpaste can be too harsh for dentures.
  • Store dentures in a container of denture-cleaning solution or water.
  • Soak in warm, not hot water. Hot water can damage their shape.
  • Use an effervescent cleansing tablet once a week to kill odor-causing bacteria.

Dentures offer many benefits to the millions who wear them. While they take some initial adjustment, they can enhance your smile as well as your long-term confidence. Return to your dentist at least once a year to evaluate fit, appearance, and to receive an oral cancer screening.

Do I need new dentures?

Well that depends. Here are some things to consider:

  • Dentures should normally not be worn for more than seven years without being replaced or refitted.
  • Dentures should not cause continual irritation or soreness.
  • Dentures should usually fit comfortably, adhesives are sometimes needed.
  • Dentures can hide evidence of oral pathology. An annual examination of the oral tissues by a dentist is recommended.
  • Older dentures can develop weak areas that may result in fracture of the denture base or denture teeth.
  • Dentures which fit improperly can cause wearing down of the ridges, and a caved in facial appearance.

If you fall into any of the above categories, you should visit the dentist as soon as possible.

What alternatives to dentures exist?

Dentures are a simple and practical solution as a replacement for missing teeth. However, there are other alternatives that can be used in certain cases, primarily Dental Bridges and Dental Implants.

Bridges

A bridge may be an option to replace a missing tooth or several teeth. It uses one or more teeth on either side of the bridge as an anchor. The existing teeth are reshaped to have crowns placed over them and one or more false teeth are connected between the two crowns. The whole bridge piece is then cemented into place.

Unlike a partial denture, you can't remove a bridge to clean it, but there are special cleaning aids available to keep the area around and under the bridge clean.

Click here for more information on Dental Bridges.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are artificial teeth permanently attached to your jawbone to replace one, many, or all of your teeth.

A dental implant can be thought of as an artificial root which is inserted into your jawbone. Once it has fully healed, a crown is placed on top to function as a normal tooth.

While dental implants can be superior to dentures in terms of function, they are significantly more expensive, and not all candidates have suitable bone material available for the procedure.

Dr. Goldman has trained extensively on the subject of dental implants and can advise you if you are good candidate for this procedure or not.

Dr. Goldman offers a $59 exam and x-rays in which he examines your mouth and discusses which options would work best for you so that you can make an informed decision about dentures, bridges and implants.

Call 561-967-8666 or click here to schedule online.