Individuals new to wearing dentures have many questions about what they will experience, what their appliance is like and what they will need in future. The key to success is competent and compassionate care from an experienced dentist. Education on the basics of wearing and caring for dentures is also important, and these FAQs will help you adjust to your new smile:
- What kinds of dentures are there? Many people replace one or more missing teeth with removable dentures -either a complete set or a partial denture. Where appropriate and as their budget allows, some patients opt for dentures supported by small metal implants, which are placed into the jawbone to secure the denture, eliminating any movement of the appliance.
- What are dentures made of? Dentures are custom-made at a dental lab according to impressions provided by the dentist. The technician uses naturally-colored plastic resin to make both the artificial teeth and gums. Partial dentures are anchored to the remaining teeth with metal clasps.
- How many appointments does it take to get dentures? The short answer is a few. The first appointment involves evaluation by the dentist to discuss options for tooth replacement after extraction. The dentist may take x-rays and impressions during this visit. Subsequent visits involve fitting a temporary denture, if required, and final checks and fittings on the permanent denture.
- How will wearing dentures change how I eat, speak and look? A correctly fitted denture is an outstanding way to replace teeth, but eating and speaking does require time for facial muscles and ligaments to adjust. The patient must chew using both sides of the mouth simultaneously. Small pieces of softer foods help to practice chewing. Slower, more deliberate speaking avoids clicking noises or slight slurring of certain letter sounds. In private, the individual can read out aloud from a newspaper or book until speech regularizes. Regarding appearance, dentures greatly minimize the sagging and wrinkles that can accompany tooth loss. Look forward to a bright, natural-looking smile.
- What should my oral hygiene look like? Brush the entire denture with a paste, or soak in a water-activated product to remove plaque and avoid stains. Both should be approved by the American Dental Association as appropriate for dentures. Dentists direct most patients to take their dentures out at bedtime. Also, continue with regular examinations and cleanings (for remaining teeth) as your dentist and hygienist recommend. Get any sore spots or redness on the gums checked immediately.
- Are dentures expensive? Even with modern dental treatments such as implants, dentures remain a reliable option for tooth replacement. They are more budget-friendly and with proper care can last 5 to 7 years or beyond.
Thomas W. Kauffman DDS PC would be happy to discuss your questions about dentures. Located in downtown Atlanta, GA, Dr. Kauffman and his staff are eager to give you the attractive and healthy smile you have always wanted. For a consultation, call them at 404-524-1981.