One hundred twenty million people in the US are missing at least one tooth, and more than 36 million Americans that don’t have any teeth at all. Missing teeth can cause a wealth of problems. In addition to the aesthetic concerns of a gap in your smile, missing teeth can lead to obesity, diabetes, coronary artery disease, and even some forms of cancer. At Oakland City Dental in Oakland, California, Dahab Gaime, DDS, protects her patients with complete and partial dentures. If you’re missing teeth, call or book an appointment online today and let Dr. Gaime give you a new smile.
Dentures are removable replacements for missing teeth and the surrounding tissues. They’re custom made for your mouth and your smile. Dentures have seen incredible advances in recent years, and the dentures available today at Oakland City Dental not only look natural but feel comfortable as well.
Partial dentures are used when teeth need to be replaced in a mouth that still has some natural teeth. A partial denture consists of replacement teeth that are attached to a gum-colored plastic base that fits in between the existing natural teeth and essentially acts as a removable bridge.
Complete dentures are used when there are no teeth left in either the upper and/or lower jaw and the entire smile needs to be replaced. For upper dentures, that acrylic base covers the roof of the mouth, while lower dentures are shaped like a horseshoe to leave plenty of room for the tongue.
Dr. Gaime will take an impression of your mouth that will be sent to a lab, where the dentures will be constructed to look and eventually feel just like your natural teeth.
If you need to have damaged teeth removed in order to make way for a set of complete dentures, Dr. Gaime will perform one of two possible procedures:
Dr. Gaime will wait until your mouth and its tissues have completely healed before placing the dentures. You’ll be without teeth for this period of healing, which can sometimes take a few months.
Dr. Gaime will insert the dentures immediately after your remaining teeth are removed. The advantage to immediate full dentures is that you don’t have to be without your teeth during the healing period, but since the bone supporting your teeth reshapes as it heals, you’ll have to come back several months later to get the dentures relined.
Dentures might feel awkward before you’ve become fully accustomed to them. You might go through a period of adjustment in getting used to speaking and eating with them, and some people experience a feeling of looseness or bulkiness in their mouth. Eventually, the muscles of your cheeks and tongue will acclimate, though, and they should feel fairly natural.