As dentists, our goal is to preserve what Mother Nature gave you.
Despite ours and your best efforts, sometimes a person’s teeth need to be removed. Almost always the cause is either structural destruction of the teeth by dental caries (cavities) or by loss of the periodontium (supporting bone and gum tissue). When these diseases are severe and widespread enough, the teeth themselves become a health liability. It is at this point where dentures come into play.
Dentures are a prosthetic device designed to replace the missing teeth and provide support and protection for the remaining structures in the face.
The generic term denture can be divided into the categories of partial denture (replacing some missing teeth while others remain to help support the partial denture), complete dentures (completely missing all the teeth in the arch of the mouth), or hybrid denture (a complete denture that uses dental implants to help support and retain).
Complete dentures use the residual boney ridge and palate (roof of the mouth) for support and retention. The device is made of acrylic and plastic teeth. It is supported, when in function by the underlying gum and bone tissue and is retained up by the suction provided by the suction cup shape of the roof of the mouth. The better adapted the denture is to the tissue of your mouth, the better it works and feels. The very best dentures will give a flawless appearance but only will allow for 15 to 20 percent of the biting and chewing function of natural teeth. The lower denture, missing the palate due to a tongue, is a poor replacement for natural teeth and is often the source of frustration, but is an answer.
To improve upon complete denture, dental implants (titanium screws) can serve as anchors which drastically improve the function of a complete denture. I advise, at a minimum, two implants are placed to help anchor a lower full denture.
Historically dentists do not like to make dentures nor do most have the knowledge to create them properly. They are difficult, take many steps and despite making the perfect denture, patients with unrealistic expectations are left disappointed. These facts result in a large population with ill fitting, poor performing and unsightly dentures. By being meticulous at every step, utilizing the best of technology, and using the best materials available, we make premium dentures. It is a procedure I love to do. If your existing dentures flop around or your existing teeth have lived their lives, call us for a consultation and we can explain all the options.
(Kiel and New Holstein Family Dental is a Preferred Business Sponsor of the Tri-County News.)