What are dentures?
A denture is a removable prosthesis used to replace missing teeth that is usually made from acrylic or a combination of acrylic and metal alloy. A partial denture is fitted to replace some missing teeth and a complete denture is used when all natural teeth are missing. Well-fitting dentures are an ideal solution for restoring the look and function of the mouth, as well as helping to boost confidence.
A denture can also improve facial structure, particularly in the cheek area and around the lips.
In the past, some people had the off-putting experience of struggling with uncomfortable or unattractive dentures.
Modern dentures are natural looking, fit much more securely and comfortably, and are made from high quality materials, so you can feel confident and assured when eating, talking and smiling.
How are dentures made and fitted?
The manufacture and fitting of dentures is an involved process and several appointments will be needed to ensure the most secure and comfortable fit.
Following an initial consultation, impressions are taken of the mouth so that a wax model of the dentures can be made and used to check for fit, bite and comfort. Then, a final set of dentures is produced and fitted, followed by a further review to ensure the dentures are still comfortable and functioning properly.
What to expect when dentures are first fitted
It can take a little while to get used to new dentures, especially if they are a full set. If eating is affected, try starting with softer foods and gradually introduce more ‘challenging’ items. There may also be a slight increase in the amount of saliva, but this will lessen within a couple of weeks.
If speech is affected, try reading out loud and repeating difficult words to help speed up the adjustment process.
Occasionally, dentures may feel a little sore if they are pressing on parts of the gum, but this can be resolved by the dentist who will adjust the surface of the denture.
Looking after your dentures
- Attend regular check-ups
- Remove dentures at night (unless otherwise directed) to give gums a rest
- Clean dentures with a soft toothbrush or a special denture brush and denture cream
- Always store dentures in water or denture fluid and rinse thoroughly before putting back in
- Aim to clean dentures after every meal if possible
- Brush gums, tongue and any remaining teeth when dentures are taken out