The loss of teeth can result in many other health issues. Without properly aligned teeth an individual might not be able to chew correctly and this may affect their diet. Improper or incomplete chewing habits can lead to indigestion and even more serious conditions like malnutrition. Missing teeth can also cause all other teeth in the jaw to shift, which changes the bite pattern and can lead to head, neck and jaw pain. This is why anyone with a missing tooth should explore having the tooth restored, which can be done via dentures fitted by a dentist, denturist or prosthodontist.
Patients with missing teeth have two restorative alternatives to choose from – a complete denture to replace all the teeth in the upper or lower jaws, or partial dentures or overdentures for replacement of a few teeth. As well as being removable and intended for those who have lost a few teeth, partial dentures require abutting teeth to anchor them. Overdentures use the roots of the remaining teeth to hold them in place and are removable, as well.
Dentures have to be custom fitted to the jaws and gums of each patient. This requires a thorough examination of their gum line and facial bones. Some patients may require extraction of remaining teeth or shaping of the areas of the jaw to allow dentures to fit comfortably.Sometimes, during the extraction or shaping process swelling may occur in which case a temporary denture is inserted for six to twelve months before a permanent denture is made so that it fits properly. Patients have many material options to choose, and the choice can significantly affect the overall result and the expenditure involved.
A polymer denture looks far more natural and is substantially stronger than one made from plastic. Many people opt to pay the higher cost for the polymer in order to enjoy the benefits.
Taking care of a denture is quite easy and should be integrated into a conventional dental hygiene routine. Most patients brush their remaining teeth, palate and gums several times a day, and add their dentures to this process, as well. Dentists advise patients to remove their dentures at night, so saliva can do its job in keeping the mouth clean and so the dentures can be put in a germ-killing solution to remove bacteria. As the dentures sometimes irritate the gum and tissues, it is essential maintain good oral hygiene.
Denture wearers will need to arrange specific denture maintenance appointments with their dentist after approximately five or seven years.