A complete denture is an appliance that replaces the full compliment of teeth in your upper or lower jaw and provides support for the cheeks and lips.
Most dentures are made of acrylic and can be fabricated two different ways.
- A conventional denture is made after all teeth have been extracted and the tissues (gums) have healed.
- An upper denture has acrylic, usually flesh colored, that covers the palate (roof of the mouth).
- A lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to leave room for the tongue.
The teeth are made of plastic, porcelain or a combination thereof. Dentures can be fabricated to fit over endodontically (root canal) treated teeth with attachments or can be attached to dental implants to allow for a more secure fit of the appliance, as well as preserves the bone.
Dentures over a normal course of time will wear and need to be replaced or relined in order to keep the jaw alignment normal. The alignment will slowly change as the bone and gum ridges recede or shrink over time due to the extraction of the teeth. Regular dental examinations are still important for the denture wearer so that the oral tissues can be checked for disease or change.
Your prosthodontist has expert training in the complex anatomy of the jaws, phonetics of your speech and smile design. This knowedge will allow them to create a beautiful, well-fitting denture just for you.