If you are missing multiple teeth and wish to have them replaced in a cost-effective and quick fashion, dentures are a good option. They are an alternative to costly options such as bridges and implants
FULL / COMPLETE DENTURES
If you are missing all your teeth in one arch, you may require full dentures. Many patients claim upper dentures tend to be quite satisfactory, and this is because there is often a sufficient amount of bone to hold the denture in well, and to provide good suction capabilities.
On the other hand, lower full dentures are notorious for being troublesome, as more often than not, there is insufficient bone in place to hold the denture well.
Most cases are relatively straight forward, however in some complex circumstances, if you are having trouble with an existing full denture, your dentist may recommend you see either an experienced prosthesist, or a prosthodontist (specialist) to assist you.
CHROME PARTIAL DENTURES
If you are missing several teeth, but not all of them, a chrome partial denture is often the best solution. This type of partial denture can last a very long time, as long as the rest of your teeth are kept in good condition. It is strong, durable, and much more comfortable than other types of dentures.
The only minor disadvantage of chrome dentures is the difficulty of adding to the dentures in the unlikely scenario that you lose more teeth in the future. Additionally, chrome dentures rely on strong clasps (small hooks) that clip onto your existing healthy teeth. These may sometimes be required in aesthetic zones of your mouth. If you wish for these clasps not to show, your dentist may recommend either a dental bridge or implants.
It is important for you to discuss the advantages and disadvantages with your dentist regarding which type of partial denture would suit you best.
ACRYLIC PARTIAL DENTURES
Acrylic dentures are a much cheaper alternative to chrome dentures, however they tend not to last as long as their chrome counterparts, nor are they near as comfortable.
The only advantage of acrylic partial dentures besides their low cost, would be the ability to be able to repair the denture should you lose a lot more teeth in the future.
Most patients who choose to have a partial acrylic denture do so as a transition to a chrome denture or dental bridge and implants, or need a temporary tooth replacement solution as soon as possible.
IMMEDIATE DENTURES (Chrome or Acrylic)
An immediate denture is defined as a full or partial denture that is inserted on the same day that the teeth (that have been treatment planned to come out) are removed.
The major advantage of an immediate denture is the lack of time between having your teeth extracted and the denture fitted. Normally, you may have to wait up to 3 months, but with immediate dentures, you don’t have to wait at all.
Immediate dentures also act like a Band-Aid by covering up the exposed sockets after the extractions.
Rather than the usual 4-5 appointments for a conventional denture, immediate dentures only require between 2-3 appointments. This is important for patients might be in pain and need a solution ASAP.
A major disadvantage of immediate dentures is the fact that it will never fit as well as a conventional denture that is fabricated after teeth have been extracted for 6-8 weeks. Whenever teeth are removed, the jaw bone takes months to shrink, and so this may cause a space to form between the jaw bone and the denture, inevitably causing it to become loose. After 6-8 of wearing an immediate denture, your dentist will recommend to “reline” the denture, in order to fill this space in. In some circumstances, it may be better to actually get a new denture, rather than reline the existing one.
The biggest disadvantage of dentures is that fact that they are removable and need to be cleaned on a daily basis.
Discuss with your dentist whether immediate dentures may be suitable for you.
Actual Cases By Dr Ken Teoh and Dr Lisa Guo At EPSOM Dental
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