What are Dentures?

An Overview of Dentures for Seniors

Dentures are a type of false teeth that many seniors use after losing teeth to decay, disease or physical damage. Dentures are very convenient, work well and allow you to maintain a normal lifestyle. Here is an overview of dentures for seniors.

What are Dentures?

Full and Partial Dentures

The first thing to understand is that there are full and partial dentures. Full dentures include a complete array of false teeth meant to replace all of the teeth in the mouth. These are appropriate only when all teeth have been lost or extracted. Partial dentures consist of short bridges of multiple artificial teeth that span open spaces between natural teeth that are still present in the mouth.

Immediate and Conventional

Two more categories of dentures to know about are immediate and conventional. These terms have to do with when the dentures are fitted to the gums and jaw. Conventional dentures are created from molds of the gums and jaw after removing all the teeth and allowing the tissue to heal for a few months. These are very stable. Immediate dentures are made by a dentist from molds taken before the teeth are all extracted or before the tissue heals. They are fitted onto your gums as soon as the teeth are extracted although adjustments are usually necessary over time.

Fixed and Removable Dentures

A final distinction is between fixed and removable dentures. Most dentures are removable like a mouth guard. Denture adhesive can be used to help secure them in place during the day. Fixed dentures are attached to implants put in the mouth. A dentist can insert posts into the jaw or roof of the mouth. Fixed dentures lock onto those posts so that they stay in place permanently.

Materials Used To Make Dentures

Many materials are used to create dentures. Exactly what they’re made of depends on your specific needs. Nearly all dentures today are made mainly from acrylic resin. Some dentures have metal inside of the acrylic teeth and along the plate in order to provide extra support. A few types of high-end dentures actually have sculpted porcelain teeth set in an acrylic base. The quality and combination of materials used in the false teeth can vary greatly depending on the manufacturer.

Wearing Dentures

Wearing conventional removable dentures is usually very easy and can greatly improve senior health. The dentures are worn all day long and then soaked in a special solution at night. Oral hygiene with dentures is simple. The dentures are brushed once a day, rinsed off after meals and then soaked to stay moist overnight. You do have to visit a dentist occasionally to ensure everything fine with the dentures and your gums.