Dentist Blog

Posts for tag: Dentures

By Thomas W. Kauffman, DDS
December 06, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Dental Implants   Dentures  

Some patients who wear dentures face a kind of Catch-22: their denture fit may have loosened and become uncomfortable over time due to continued bone loss, yet the same bone loss prevents them from obtaining dental implants, a superior tooth replacement system to dentures.

But there may be a solution to this dilemma that combines the stability of implants with a removable denture. A set of smaller diameter implants — “mini-implants” — can support a removable denture with less bone than required by a conventional implant.

Like all living tissue, bone has a life cycle: after a period of growth, the older bone dissolves and is absorbed by the body, a process known as resorption. The forces generated when we bite or chew are transmitted by the teeth to the jawbones, which stimulates new bone formation to replace the resorbed bone. When the teeth are lost, however, the stimulation is lost too; without it, resorption will eventually outpace bone growth and repair, causing the bone mass to shrink.

Removable dentures also can’t supply the missing stimulation — bone loss continues as if the dentures weren’t there; and due to the compressive forces of a denture, bone loss accelerates. As the jawbone structure used to originally form the denture’s fit eventually shrinks, the denture becomes loose and difficult to wear. It’s possible to adjust to the new jaw contours by relining the dentures with new material or creating a new set of dentures that match the current bone mass. Without adequate bone, fixed crowns or bridges anchored by conventional implants may also be out of the picture.

On the other hand, mini-implants with their smaller diameter need less bone than the traditional implant. A few strategically placed within the jaw are strong and stable enough to support a removable denture. One other advantage: these mini-implants can be installed in one visit with local anesthesia and usually without the need for incisions or stitches.

If you would like more information on dentures supported by mini-implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The ‘Great’ Mini-Implant.”

By Thomas W. Kauffman, DDS
May 08, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Your missing teeth may have you feeling as though your smile is an embarrassing aspect of your appearance rather than a beautiful trait todentures be proud of. Luckily, your dentist can help you replace your missing teeth and restore your confidence with dentures. Find out more about dentures and what they can do for you with Dr. Thomas Kauffman at his practice in Atlanta, GA.

What are my options for replacing my missing teeth? 
Replacing your missing teeth can benefit your smile in many ways. Missing teeth cause issues like shifting surrounding teeth and bone atrophy, which can cause other, more serious complications. Additionally, filling in your gaps can boost your confidence and give you back your self-esteem. Your options for replacing your teeth with dentures include:

  • Full Dentures: This style of denture replaces all of the teeth on an arch and fit onto the gums where the teeth once were. The natural look and the ability to replace many teeth at once make full dentures a good option for a variety of patients missing all their teeth.
  • Partial Dentures: Partial dentures are reserved for those patients who have one or more remaining healthy teeth. The denture fits over the teeth and allows the healthy tooth to act as an anchor, increasing the tooth’s stimulation to keep it healthier for longer. Using the natural teeth as an anchor also provides added security in terms of the denture staying in place during everyday activities like eating or speaking.
  • Implant-Supported Dentures: Implant supported dentures use the same idea as full or partial dentures. However, while traditional dentures rely on gravity or suction to stay in place, implant-supported dentures take advantage of dental implants surgically placed into the jawbone in the mouth. The implants integrate into the bone and provide a sturdy foundation on which the denture can attach, keeping it permanently in the mouth and giving you a natural-looking and effectively functioning smile.

Dentures in Atlanta, GA
If you think you could benefit from dentures, consulting with your dentist can allow you to determine if this is your best option moving forward. For more information on dentures, including implant-supported dentures, please contact Dr. Kauffman at his practice in Atlanta, GA. Call (404) 524-1981 to schedule your consultation for dentures today!

By Thomas W. Kauffman, DDS
February 16, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Dentures  

Twenty-six percent of American adults between 65 and 74 have lost all their teeth to dental disease. This isn’t an appearance problem only—lack of teeth can also harm nutrition and physical well-being.

Fortunately, we have advanced restorative options that can effectively replace missing teeth. Of these, there’s a tried and true one that’s both affordable and effective: removable dentures.

Dentures are simple in design: a plastic or resin base, colored with a pinkish-red hue to resemble gums to which we attach prosthetic (false) teeth. But while the design concept isn’t complicated, the process for creating and fitting them can be quite involved: they must conform to an individual patient’s jaws and facial structure if they’re going to appear natural.

If you’re considering dentures, here’s some of what it will take to achieve a successful outcome.

Positioning the teeth. The position of the prosthetic teeth on the base greatly determines how natural they’ll appear and how well they’ll function. So, we’ll need to plan tooth placement beforehand based on your facial and jaw structures, as well as photos taken of you before tooth loss. We’ll also consider how large the teeth should be, how far to place them forward or back from the lips, and whether to include “imperfections” from your old look that you see as part of your appearance.

Simulating the gums. While the teeth are your smile’s stars, the gums are the supporting cast. It’s important that we create a denture base that attractively frames the teeth by determining how much of the gums show when you smile, or adding color and even textures to better resemble gum tissue. We can also add ridges behind the upper teeth to support speech.

Balancing the bite. Upper and lower dentures don’t operate in and of themselves—they must work cooperatively and efficiently with each other during eating or speaking. So while appearance matters, the bite’s bite adjustment or balance might matter more. That’s why we place a lot of attention into balancing and adjusting the bite after you receive your dentures to make sure you’re comfortable.

This is a detailed process that we may need to revisit from time to time to make sure your dentures’ fit remains tight and comfortable. Even so, modern advances in this traditional restoration continue to make them a solid choice for total tooth loss.

If you would like more information on denture restorations, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor article “Removable Dentures.”

By Thomas W. Kauffman, DDS, PC
June 09, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Dentures  

If you are missing all or most of your teeth, you have probably considered dentures. But how do you know if dentures are right for you? Dentures can boost your confidence and breathe new life into your teeth, allowing you to keep on smiling. Find out more about dentures with help from your Atlanta, GA dentist, Dr. Thomas W. Kauffman.Dentures

What can dentures do for me?

  • Partial Dentures: If you are missing some, but not all, of your teeth, partial dentures use the healthy remaining natural teeth as an anchor on which to attach. The denture fits over the teeth and the teeth through the denture, blending the natural teeth with the denture to give your smile a natural appearance.
  • Full Dentures: Full dentures replace an entire arch of missing teeth. Patients who are missing all of the teeth on both the bottom and top of their mouth require a set of full dentures.
  • Implant-Supported Dentures: This option for replacing all your teeth one or both arches utilizes dental implant technology to anchor a full denture in place.
  • Immediate Dentures: Immediate dentures benefit those Atlanta patients who require a dental procedure to extract their remaining natural teeth before wearing their dentures. Your dentist works together with a dental lab before your extraction appointment to create immediate dentures which you can wear directly after extractions. The denture acts as a band-aid of sorts and might need adjustment after a few weeks to accommodate for swelling.

Caring For Your Dentures
Properly caring for your dentures is crucial to their fit and functionality as well as how long they ultimately last. Clean your dentures with a denture brush and denture cleaner at least twice a day. Be sure to use a toothbrush to brush any remaining natural teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a day. If there are no remaining teeth, brush the gums and other oral tissues at least twice a day. Soak dentures in denture solution while not in use, particularly overnight while you are asleep. It is helpful to stand over a folded towel while handling your dentures to prevent damage if they were to fall.

For more information on dentures, please contact Dr. Kauffman in Atlanta, GA. Call (404) 524-1981 to speak with a friendly and knowledgeable associate about scheduling your consultation for dentures today!

By Dr. Kauffman
February 12, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Dentures  

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 Denture FAQswearing 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.