Complete dentures are a type of removable dental prosthetic used to replace a full arch of missing teeth in the upper or lower jaw. They are designed to restore the appearance, function, and oral health of individuals who have lost all of their natural teeth.
Here’s what you should know about complete dentures:
1. Construction: Complete dentures consist of a pink acrylic base that simulates gum tissue, along with artificial teeth made of acrylic or porcelain. The base is custom-made to fit snugly over the gums, providing support and stability for the artificial teeth.
2. Types of Complete Dentures: There are two main types of complete dentures:
– Conventional Dentures: These dentures are made and fitted after the remaining teeth have been extracted, and the gums have healed. The process typically involves multiple appointments to create accurate impressions, bite registration, and customization of the dentures for optimal fit and aesthetics.
– Immediate Dentures: Immediate dentures are fabricated in advance and can be inserted immediately after the extraction of the remaining teeth. They allow for immediate tooth replacement, but adjustments may be necessary as the gums and bone heal and shrink over time.
3. Fitting Process: The fitting process for complete dentures involves several steps:
– Impressions: Your dentist will take detailed impressions of your gums and any remaining teeth. These impressions serve as a basis for creating dentures that fit your mouth accurately.
– Wax Try-In: A wax model of the denture is created to check the fit, bite, and aesthetics. This allows you to see how the dentures will look and feel before the final fabrication.
– Final Denture: Once adjustments and modifications have been made, the final dentures are fabricated and placed in your mouth. Your dentist will ensure that they fit properly and provide instructions on how to care for and maintain your dentures.
4. Adapting to Dentures: It may take some time for you to adapt to wearing complete dentures. Initially, you may experience some discomfort, soreness, or difficulty speaking and eating. With time and practice, your mouth muscles and oral tissues will adjust, and these issues should improve. It’s important to follow your dentist’s instructions for proper use and care of your dentures.
5. Oral Hygiene: Good oral hygiene is still essential even with complete dentures. They should be removed and cleaned daily to remove plaque, debris, and bacteria. Additionally, it’s important to clean your gums, tongue, and any remaining natural teeth (if applicable) using a soft toothbrush or specialized denture brush.
6. Regular Dental Check-ups: Even with complete dentures, it’s important to visit your dentist regularly for check-ups. They will examine your oral tissues, ensure your dentures fit properly, and make any necessary adjustments to maintain your oral health and comfort.
Complete dentures provide functional and aesthetic benefits, allowing you to regain the ability to speak, chew, and smile confidently. However, it’s important to note that they may require periodic adjustments or relining over time due to changes in the shape of the jawbone and gums.
If you are considering complete dentures, consult with a dental professional who will evaluate your oral health, discuss your treatment options, and guide you through the process to ensure you achieve a comfortable and functional dental restoration.
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