Dentures (false teeth)

Dentures are false teeth which are made of nylon, acrylic (plastic) or metal.

They replace missing teeth and solves the problem caused by gaps. They fit comfortably over the gums and jawbone. They can be easily removed.

When you lose some of your teeth, the gaps created can cause problems when you eat or talk. Another problem which may arise is that the teeth on either side of the gap may increase at an angle towards the gap. Sometimes, the only option left is to remove and replace all the teeth. Dentures help in solving all these problems.

You may, therefore, need either:

  • complete dentures (a full set) – They replace all your upper or lower teeth, or
  • partial dentures – They replace just one tooth or a few missing teeth, as per your condition

Dentures also help in improving the appearance of your smile and thus, increase your confidence.

Complete dentures

A full denture is fitted when all your upper or lower teeth are removed.

It does not take much time to fit a denture.

However, a problem may occur if the dentures are fitted immediately after the removal of teeth. There are high chances that the shape of gums and bone will change quickly and there will be a need of relining or remaking the dentures again after a few months.

Occasionally, before fitting dentures, you should leave your gums to heal and change in shape for many months.

You should have your dentures made and fitted by a qualified dental technician or a dentist.

A dentist – He will take measurements and impressions (moulds) of your mouth, and after full examination, will order your full or partial dentures from a dental technician.

A clinical dental technician – He will provide a full set of dentures even if you haven’t had a check-up from your dentist (however, it is highly recommended to first see your dentist for a treatment plan and certificate of oral health).

Firstly, the impressions will be taken from your mouth. Then, a trial denture will be created from the information gained. After that, the trial denture will be tried in your mouth to check if it fits and you should also judge the appearance. Before the final denture is produced, you may adjust its shape and colour.

Partial dentures

It is basically designed to fill in the gaps created when one or more teeth are missing. It is made up of nylon, plastic or metal plate with false teeth attached to it. It uses metal clasps, which securely hold it in your mouth by clipping onto some of your natural teeth. It can be easily removed.

These clips can also be made from a tooth- or gum-coloured material, but this type of clip is not suitable as it is stiffer than metal.

Looking after your dentures

You will feel a bit odd when you will wear dentures for the first time but you will get used to wearing them. For the first few days, you may need to wear your dentures all the time.

Removing your dentures at night may not be necessary but doing so will allow your gums to rest while you are asleep. But after removing your dentures, remember to keep them moist by keeping them in water or a polythene bag with some slightly wet cotton wool in it. You may also keep it in a suitable overnight denture-cleaning solution. This will prevent it from changing shape due to dryness.

Cleaning dentures

You should regularly clean your dentures by removing plaque and food deposits from them. Avoiding this practice may lead to problems such as gum disease, tooth decay, bad breath, and oral thrush.

You should clean your dentures at least two times a day. You should:

  • Before soaking the dentures, brush them with toothpaste or soap and water, to remove food particles
  • Remove the stains and bacteria by soaking the dentures in a fizzy solution of denture-cleaning tablets (follow the manufacturer’s instructions)
  • When brushing them, don’t scrub them too hard

Dentures are very delicate and can break if you drop them. To avoid this, clean them over a bowl or a sink filled with water or something that is soft, such as a folded towel.

Eating with dentures

If you are wearing dentures for the first time, you should eat soft foods. Cut the food into small pieces and chew it slowly using both sides of your mouth.

Avoid eating anything that is hard, sticky or has sharp edges.

Slowly start to eat other types of food until you are back to your old diet. Completely avoid the use of toothpicks.

Would you like to learn more? Schedule an appointment with us by contacting our practice and learn more about dentures. Our Dentists or Dental Technician will also recommend you the treatments and solutions for the same.