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What are dentures?

Whether you have lost a tooth due to trauma or infection, it is vital to replace missing teeth since they are needed for proper biting and chewing, as well as preventing the face from sagging and looking older than you really are. Dentures are a suitable option for many and offer replacements for one or multiple missing teeth. They consist of numerous acrylic teeth which mimic the natural tooth to enhance facial appearance and create a better smile.

There are two main types of dentures: full and partial. Your dentist will help you choose the type of denture that's best for you based on whether some or all of your teeth are going to be replaced and the cost involved.

Types of dentures

While both types are removable, there are two main types of dentures: full and partial. Full dentures have a flesh coloured base that fits over the gums and stays in place with suction, while partial dentures are used to replace only a limited number of teeth, and are a single piece fitting that is supported by the remaining teeth and gums.

While traditional dentures are made from a pliable material which allows for suction, they are susceptible to shrinkage, thus creating a prosthetic that isn't always perfectly fitting. Cosmetic dentures are made to look more realistic and are made from a chrome-cobalt base that eliminates the possibility of the denture shrinking and warping, thus are better fitting. Cosmetic dentures are in many cases installed using implant anchors in the jawbone, which either rest on or snap onto the implant. What this does is allow the denture to stay in place without the chance of it moving around, which makes the denture more comfortable than a standard one.

How long do dentures last?

Traditional dentures which are prone to shrinkage may need to be replaced or rebased every few years. Because the mouth changes as you age, dentures won't be able to fit forever and will need to be reshaped as you age. If your dentures fit poorly, cause persistent mouth irritation, chip, crack, or break, it is essential to see your dentist.