If age, injury, or a health condition results in the loss of a patient’s teeth, dentures can be prescribed. Dentures are a set of artificial teeth and gums fitted to your mouth in order to replace missing teeth. Removable dentures have some advantages over other tooth prosthetics, such as not requiring dental surgery to use, but should not be kept in the mouth for longer than a day and must be cleaned before every use. There are three different kinds of dentures: partial dentures, complete dentures, and immediate dentures. All are made from materials that are indistinguishable from any remaining teeth.
Immediate dentures are temporary dentures built before teeth are removed, meant to protect the gums and replace teeth immediately after tooth extraction. They are adjustable in order to deal with the change in the gumline while the gums heal from the tooth extraction. Usually they are replaced in a few months by partial or complete dentures.
Partial dentures are prescribed when a patient is missing some (but not all) teeth in the upper or lower jaw. Removable partial dentures function like a removable retainer; a wire goes along the existing teeth, holding the dentures in place. Fixed partial dentures, or bridges, are discussed in their own category.
Complete dentures are prescribed when there are no teeth left in the top or bottom jaw. Typically these are removable. To ensure that they last for years and remain in good condition, our staff will inform you of the best practices for cleaning and maintaining your dentures. There are many treatments that will keep your dentures clean, so don’t be afraid to ask about alternatives if you think it will be difficult to fit a certain cleaning method into your daily life.