What Dentures Are and What They Are Used For

What Dentures Are and What They Are Used For

Oct 01, 2020

Having a missing tooth affects a person’s self-esteem and confidence but with dentures, you get a chance to confidently smile again.

Dentures refer to artificial replacements that serves to replace natural gums and teeth lost in an accident, by a disease, or due to poor oral care. Most dentists and prosthodontists will suggest the use of dentures when a patient has few healthy teeth left or no teeth at all.

Types of Partial Dentures

Dentures consist of two types; partial and full dentures. Full dentures are mostly used by patients who have no healthy teeth left. Your dental care provider will help you assess which of the two is best for you. If one or more of your teeth is lost, partial dentures will provide a solution to your situation by replacing any missing tooth hence giving you your normal chewing abilities and a perfect smile. There are various types of partial dentures in existence making it difficult and confusing for patients to pick which one to use. Although your dentist will shed some light by giving professional recommendations, the ultimate decision is yours.

Below are the five types of partial dentures available:

1. Acrylic-removable dentures

When acrylic-removable dentures are compared to a cast-metal partial, most people find them to be less optimal. This is because the teeth replacements attached to it are set from a pink-acrylic base which is bulky and thick to lower the risks of suffering from a breakage. If you opt for this option, your dental practitioner will attach a flipper with clasps of metal to your remaining natural teeth which are usually visible when one smiles and talks. Aside from the bulkiness of the flipper, something that patients find aggravating, acrylic-removable dentures restore a person’s ability to eat fairly and speak normally.

2. Flexible partial dentures

Flexible partial dentures create an alternative option for patients who experience discomfort as a result of getting a cast-metal partial or an acrylic one. It may also be suitable for you if you have an allergic reaction to acrylic dentures. Flexible partials are made from a special type of thin plastic that is sensitive to heat making it not only comfortable for the user to wear it, but also makes its appearance realistic. During its attachment process, thin clasps that resemble the color of the gums are fixed into the spaces around the teeth. Although flexible partials only provide a temporary solution, they tend to be durable enough to last for several years.

3. Fixed bridge

If you have either one or more missing teeth and at both ends there are healthy teeth present, fixed bridges may be the best solution for you. Fixed bridges are not removable but will rather remain inside your mouth just like the formerly lost natural teeth. You’ll be required to brush it just as you would brush existing teeth and also floss to get rid of the dirt that lodges underneath the spaces of your bridge. Fixed bridges comprise of crowns on each end and pontics fixed in between.

Despite the popularity of this solution, there are drawbacks that come with it. For instance, your remaining healthy teeth have to be grounded and prepared for the crowns to fit perfectly. By doing so, you increase the chances of suffering from dental decay in the future.

4. Cast-metal removable dentures

This is the commonest type of partial dentures and it consists of replacement teeth attached to a cast-metal frame. With proper maintenance and care, these dentures can last a long time.

5. Implant-supported fixed bridge

An implant-supported bridge is for patients who do not want to cause damage to their existing tooth structure or those with too many missing teeth such that it becomes impossible to place fixed bridges. An implant is a small post that is made of titanium that servers to replace the roots of a tooth. The bridge gets its support from the implants making it last a lifetime. An implant-supported bridge is a permanently placed device that can also be used to replace a full-teeth arch if enough implants are placed.

How to Take Care of Dentures

If you choose to go for dentures and partials in Toronto, ON, our dentists at Thorncliffe Dental will give you the following guidelines to observe:

  • Rinse off food particles from your dentures after every meal.
  • Massage and clean your gums after removing your dentures.
  • Remove your dentures at night to give the mouth time to rest.
  • Soak your dentures in water when you are not wearing them.