A denture or “plate” is used to replace missing or extracted teeth. They are made from acrylic or metal covered with acrylic and can replace from one to all of your teeth. They improve your bite, help you to eat and improve your smile and appearance. Where your denture is supported by your natural teeth, it is called a partial (“part”) denture. It may clip onto your remaining teeth with metal clasps which help to reduce any movement. In some cases, a metal (covered with acrylic) denture is an option and this is made from a cobalt-chromium mix. It is important to replace extracted/ missing teeth to avoid movement in your remaining teeth and changes to your bite which may make restoring your bite/ smile more difficult in the future.
If you require teeth to be taken out, and have been advised to have a temporary denture fitted while healing occurs, an “immediate” denture will be provided. This is made in the weeks leading up to extractions and can be fitted as soon as your teeth are extracted but may require adjustment / replacement as gum shrinkage occurs, as the gum heal, and the denture will not fit as tightly as it did when fitted. This happens over a period of 6 months.
You may find that the new denture feels different and takes a couple of weeks to “bed in”. This is common with alterations in your mouth as your tongue is very sensitive to small amounts of change, as you will know if you have ever had food stuck between your teeth. This may also alter your speech slightly, as your mouth becomes familiar with your new bite, This is common and usually disappears relatively quickly. However, if, after this time, you feel your denture needs some adjustment, perhaps due to discomfort, consult your dentist for advice. A denture adhesive and wearing it as much as possible, in the first few weeks, will help your denture to feel more comfortable in the longterm. If your denture should require adjustment, please make sure to wear it, when possible, in the days leading up to your adjustment appointment. This will help your dentist to best diagnose the problem and provide relief as quickly as possible.
If you have lost all your teeth, a complete ( “full”) denture will be provided for your upper and lower jaw and is made from acrylic. Where there is not enough bone support available, the lower denture may be dislodged by the tongue while eating / speaking. This can be reduced by using a dental adhesive.You should still attend your dentist for 6 monthly check ups as your dental team will check for problems with your denture, mouth infections and screen for early signs of mouth cancer.
Dentures vary in cost depending on their size and the material they are made from. Prices of different denture types are shown on the “Info” tab.
Implants or bridges may be available if you are unable to tolerate dentures.